Jonny Lomax pulls the strings as champions St Helens end Hull FC’s perfect start


Head coach Kristian Woolf praised the influence of Jonny Lomax as St Helens ended Hull FC’s perfect start to the Betfred Super League season, outscoring them by five tries to three to win 32-18.

Woolf said of Lomax: “I thought he did a good job. He was handling the ball well and getting the ball to the right places.”

Woolf will look to Lomax and his other big performers as they take on Sydney Roosters in the World Club Challenge at the Totally Wicked Stadium next weekend.

“Forget today, I’ve got a 100 per cent belief. We are right up for the challenge next week,” Woolf said. “They are the best team in the world and have been the best for the last couple of seasons. It’s a terrific challenge for our players.”

Of Sunday’s game he said: “It was a good game of footy in the first half and I wasn’t disappointed with how we were playing. Defensively we were good. The one try was a little bit scrappy.

“Half-time was more about being patient and sticking with what we were doing well. We had patches where we were really good. We showed our potential in the first 20 minutes of the second half.”

St Helens’ victory owed everything to the way they started the second period as the third quarter of the game saw them run in tries from Matty Costello, Luke Thompson, Louie McCarthy-Scarsbrook and James Bentley.

Aaron Smith also touched down and 12 points from the boot of Tommy Makinson showed just why champions Saints are favourites to repeat their title success.

The home side had led 6-2 at half-time but had little response to Saints’ second-half blitz.

Their points came from Carlos Tuimavave’s double and a late Jamie Shaul try, plus three successful conversions by Marc Sneyd.

A downbeat Lee Radford admitted his players had lost because they did not respond in the right way to adversity.

St Helens got a grip on the game when Hull were penalised for Jake Connor kicking out on the full and Radford felt his players were found wanting once the…

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