Barba boost for Saints

St Helens have received a boost on the Ben Barba injury front after initial scans showed no serious damage.

The fullback was stretchered off the pitch after landing awkwardly in Saints’ 60-10 over Salford, causing understandable concern.

Barba had scored a hat-trick by the time he was forced off, and now the club is working towards a diagnosis for their star man.

Barba’s performance prior to the injury had not escaped Justin Holbrook’s thoughts.

“He was brilliant,” he said.

“He’s really enjoying playing; he’s a real leader in our team and the things he does off the ball.. you probably can’t single Benny out in a performance like that, but he was phenomenal. He came back earlier than everyone else in pre-season and generally, you get your rewards from doing things like that.”

The other sour note on the evening was the red card for Matty Lees just before half-time: a decision Holbrook disagreed with.

“It’s hard for me, because he’s on my team – but I thought it was harsh,” he said. “I thought he hit the shoulder first and it’s hard to think that’s a sending off – but it is what it is.”