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St. Helens win Super League Grand Final for Three-Peat

St. Helens have defeated the Catalan Dragons 12-10 at Old Trafford to claim the 2021 Super League title, completing an historic three-peat.

Saints dominated the opening five minutes to the game. First Tommy Makinson was held up over the line before we fumbled the ball in the right corner looking for an offload.

Despite the early dominance it was Catalans who had the chance to go ahead after Saints got caught offside following a charged down kick. James Maloney put the ball through the sticks to make it 2-0 early on to the French side.

Saints grabbed Saints’ first points of the game in the 13th minute. A flowing move from left to right ended with Lachlan Coote finding Kevin Naiqama, who along with Coote was playing his final game for the Club, managed to ground the ball despite Catalans’ best attempts to hold the Fijian up. Coote missed the conversion. Saints led 4-2.

Saints could have extended the lead a few minutes later as Regan Grace touched down under the sticks, but the try was not referred to the video referee after a supposed Saints knock on in the build up. Saints were then awarded a penalty after a Benjamin Garcia high shot on Jonny Lomax in the middle of the field. Coote took the kick and nailed it to give Saints a 6-2 lead.

The visitors were then awarded a second penalty within kicking range, once again they opted to go for two points. Maloney converted from in front of the sticks, 6-4. Saints had a chance to grab a second try a minute before the break, but Grace was bundled into touch by some scrambling Dragons defenders.

6-4 was the score at the break, as Naiqama’s 13th minute try was the solitary four-pointer of the game so far. Two penalties a-piece for both sides via the boots of Maloney and Coote the other scores.

The Catalans could have had their first try a few minutes into the second half. Tommy Makinson made the tackle on Fouad Yaha but it was deemed high, Makinson was then sent to the sin bin for ten minutes.

The French side did grab their first try of the game in the 50th minute. A high kick to the corner was not dealt with by Saints and Mike McMeeken reacted quickest to ground the ball. Maloney added the extras, 10-6.

Saints could have gone ahead on the hour mark as Joe Batchelor made a big break down the right-hand side, but his pass was intercepted by Sam Tomkins.

Saints looked to have levelled the game in the 66th minute. A grubber kick by Lomax was chased by Naiqama, who won the race to the ball and grounded it for his second of the game. The try was awarded after a video referee review. Coote added a crucial two points to give the lead back to Saints 12-10.

That was the be the final score of the game, as Saints won their third Grand Final in a row to be crowned Champions of the Betfred Super League once again.

Catalans Dragons Team: Sam Tomkins, Tom Davies, Samisoni Langi, Dean Whare, Fouad Yaha, James Maloney, Josh Drinkwater, Gil Dudson, Michael McIlorum, Julian Bousquet, Matt Whitley, Mike McMeeken, Benjamin Garcia. Interchanges: Arthur Mourgue, Mickael Goudemand, Joel Tomkins, Sam Kasiano. Tries: Mike McMeeken (50) Conversions: James Maloney (1 from 1) Penalties: James Maloney (2 from 2) Saints Team: Lachlan Coote, Tommy Makinson, Kevin Naiqama, Mark Percival, Regan Grace, Jonny Lomax, Lewis Dodd, Alex Walmsley, James Roby, Matty Lees, Sione Mata’utia, Joe Batchelor, Morgan Knowles. Interchanges: Louie McCarthy-Scarsbrook, Kyle Amor, Agnatius Paasi, Jack Welsby. Tries: Kevin Naiqama (13, 66) Conversions: Lachlan Coote (1 from 2) Penalties: Lachlan Coote (1 from 1) Sin Bin: Tommy Makinson (46) HT: 4-6 FT: 10-12 Attendance: 45,177

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