Tommy Makinson benefitting from early St Helens exit decision after milestone try

St Helens boss Paul Wellens was thrilled to see his side cruise to a 40-10 win over lacklustre Leeds but insists they are far from being “the finished article”.

Leeds started brightly and Ash Handley opened the scoring in superb style when he got on the end of Brodie Croft’s kick up field to unlock the Saints defence. Saints dominated the rest of the half and following wave after wave of attack, they went into the half-time break leading thanks to tries from Sione Mata’utia and Moses Mbye.

Saints showed no let up in the second half against Leeds who at least had a Luis Roberts try to show for in the second period, but could not stop the home side from running over with five more tries from Daryl Clark, Jack Welsby twice, Curtis Sironen and Tommy Makinson as the league leaders notched up 100 points scored from their last two outings.

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Wellens was impressed with what he saw from his team and thinks things are starting to click for his side. He told a press conference: “I was delighted by our performance. We got caught on the back foot first five mins but once we warmed to the occasion we were very good. Not having a game helped us because we are down on numbers but what we weren’t lacking was energy, that was evident against Castleford and again tonight.

“I’m a big believer in defence is what you need to prioritise but I’m pleased both sides of our game are coming together but by no means we are the finished article, we still have plenty of improvement in us. The way we’ve trained in the last few weeks has been as good as we’ve trained since the start of pre season. There has been real hunger and desire around the group.”

Tommy Makinson announced he will depart the club for Catalans in the summer but notched his 200th in Saints colours with their sixth of the night. Wellens added: “Delighted for him, I really am.

“When there is speculation around players’ future it can be distracting and it can be difficult. I think having those conversations done about them moving on and the fact they have been dealt with it is reflecting in performances, they are relaxed, enjoying and absolutely determined to finish their time with us in the right way and we would love nothing more than to make that happen.