St Helens have seen their England internationals who played at the World Cup return to pre-season training and the Red Vee are keen to kick on for an unprecedented fifth consecutive Grand Final victory.
Saints had plenty on show at the World Cup but one of those returning players was the 2022 leading point scorer across all of Super League, Tommy Makinson.
Fresh off setting the record for the most tries scored by an Englishman in a single World Cup knockout game having scored five against Papua New Guinea, the winger was pleased to return to training.
“I’m feeling really refreshed, it’s class to be back with the lads. I’ve really missed it these last few months so it’s just so good being back in and amongst it,” Makinson told Saints TV in a Tweet shared to the team’s social media.
With the pandemic restrictions easing the World Club Challenge will be contested for the first time since 2020 and Saints will be hoping to put the record straight when they travel to face Penrith Panthers in February, having lost the 2020 game to Sydney Roosters.
Consequent to their trip down under Saints will miss their round one fixture with Huddersfield Giants and will have a limited pre-season in England.
Makinson commented on the game: “Yeah it’s massive, it’s as good as it gets going over there. You don’t get many opportunities to do that so I keep telling the lads it’s massive and we need to prepare for that and obviously the season ahead.”
Mark Percival’s testimonial will serve as St Helens one northern hemisphere pre-season game as they host Widnes Vikings on January 27th before heading to Australia to face St George Illawarra and then contest Penrith for the big one.
Percival is heading into his 11th season with St Helens and Makinson was keen to comment on his attributes as a player and person.
“I can’t wait to see Mark have a real good year and a successful testimonial year as well. he’s a great lad and a sensational player who the club have been so lucky to have, so hopefully we can all get behind him starting on the 27th.”