|26th Jun 2009|| Super League||HOME||8684||HT:24-0|
|MATCH NOTES : The victory was Saints 150th home Super League win. Saints kept Celtic Crusaders scoreless in the league this season.The last time this happened was in the 1953-54 season when Saints double nilled both Liverpool City and Swinton in the same campaign. |
|Age in brackets is at time of match - Total average age for this team is 27. - ** non-playing sub|
MATCH REPORT : SAINTS remained on course for their fifth League Leader’s Shield in a row after beating Celtic Crusaders 30-0 at a muggy GPW Recruitment Stadium. After a slow start from both sides, Saints showed their class with four first half tries that set them on their way their eighth win in a row. Lee Gilmour opened the scoring with his 50th Saints career try and there were further four-pointers from Paul Wellens, Tony Puletua and Matt Gidley. That gave them a 24-0 lead they never looked like losing and a sole second half score from Chris Dean sealed victory.
Saints welcomed back Sean Long into the starting line up following a thumb problem whilst Chris Dean moved back into his more familiar centre role. Celtic were apparently down to 16 fit first team players, so that meant a call up for Lloyd White in the stand off position. There was also a return to the GPW Recruitment Stadium for loanee Ste Tyrer.Saints kicked off in a swirl of rain and immediately sent the ball dead. That gave Celtic a strong set and they forced a drop out with some cute kicking. And on the last set, Ade Gardner quelled a high bomb.Lloyd White then chipped over the Saints’ defence but Francis Meli was up to the task. Saints were making in-roads into the Crusaders’ half but struggling to find the space as the Celtic defence stayed tight. But they went ahead when Leon Pryce fed Lee Gilmour and he side stepped Damien Quinn to go under the posts for his 50th in the red vee. Long successful with the conversion. A minute later Pryce broke through and repeated the same trick to send Paul Wellens in. Long again successful. Tony Puletua extended the lead further with a bulldozing run which the Celtic defence couldn’t halt. Long making it three from three with the boot. Matt Gidley celebrated his new one-year contract extension with a nice finish after great work from Chris Flannery and Wellens. Long from the touchline to make it 24-0 at half time.
In the second half an early kick chase by Mark Lennon was just grounded in goal by Francis Meli. Wellens then caught a bomb on the fly in spectacular fashion. Ade Gardner was next up, clearing his lines with pace. On 68 minutes, Celtic forced another drop out and they looked to break Saints defence for the first time this season, but straight from the restart they knocked on and the chance was gone. Saints finally made the breakthrough with around seven minutes to go. Chris Dean taking James Roby’s ball to go over in the corner. Long added another perfect conversion.
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