Saints boss Kristian Woolf was quick to praise young starlet Jack Welsby following his Man of the Match display in the 34-6 win over Wakefield on Friday.

After a scoreless first half, the Saints came out of the blocks after the break to post six tries to one over Trinity with ‘stand-in’ centre Welsby the star of the show, scoring one and having a hand in three others.

Woolf was full of praise for Welsby – not only for his obvious ability but his efforts and work ethic.

I’ve watched Jack come through the ranks as a kid and he was always destined to be a superstar of our game. He has a great temperament and the dedication to keep improving so the world really is at his feet.

He rightly took a lot of the headlines following his last-gasp winner in the Betfred Super League Grand Final over Wigan last year, and he’s obviously knuckled down over pre-season with the aim to cement himself a starting position in 2021 – and between full back and centre he has managed to do so with distinction over the first four games of the season.

The champions continue to sit pretty at the top of the table after three rounds, with Wigan, Castleford and Catalan also boasting a 100% winning record so far.

Saints face Ian Watson’s Huddersfield Giants on Thursday at the John Smith’s Stadium.

The Giants have lost all three of their Betfred Super League games so far – one of four teams yet to win a game.

There seems to be a genuine gap this season between the top and bottom teams with hardly, if any, ‘shock’ results. Some of the better fancied teams like Warrington and Hull FC however are still to convince.

Personally, I think we desperately need the reintroduction of reserve grade rugby, and more playing opportunities to increase the standard of some of the players on show. Super League shouldn’t be a place to ‘develop’ players, but a place to showcase our elite. Unfortunately looking at some of the performances so far this season this isn’t the case.

Back to Thursday, and as poor as the form Huddersfield are in, they always make a tough game when Saints are in town.

They have some quality players in their ranks, including England star Jermaine McGilvary, youngster Jake Wardle and their key play maker Aiden Sezer, who at the start of the campaign was one of the favourites with title sponsors Betfred for Man of Steel glory.

There is no doubt what this team are capable of, but the issue seems to be consistency in both attack and defence.

This was highlighted last week in the shock defeat to Hull KR. It wasn’t the best of starts for the Giants after they failed to deal with the kick off, allowing KR winger Craig Hall to post the fastest ever try in Super League – in just seven seconds!

Things went from bad to worse as they went 18-nil down in the first half. They fought back to draw level at 24-all before Robins Jordan Abdul slotted over a 77th minute drop goal to take the points.

Anyway, I’m obviously going to back the mighty Saints to go and do a job in Yorkshire.

I’m going for a win by 20 points or more (2/1 Betfred), while either Wigan or Castleford will lose their 100% record as they face off at the DW Stadium on Thursday.

Also, Catalans will look to add more misery to a traveling Warrington side on Saturday.

Whenever you bet, Betfred

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