|Betfred Super League – Magic Weekend|
|St Helens (20) 36|
|Tries: Makinson, Grace, Lomax, Fages, Ashworth, Coote, Naiqama Goals: Coote 4|
|Castleford (6) 16|
|Tries: Millington, Clarkson, Eden Goals: Mata’utia, Rankin|
Super League leaders St Helens made easy work of beating Castleford Tigers at Anfield as they restored their six-point lead at the top of the table.
Saints quickly took control with first-half tries from Tommy Makinson, Regan Grace, Jonny Lomax and Theo Fages.
Grant Millington scored for Cas, while Jack Ashworth went in under the sticks to extend Saints’ lead after half-time.
Lachlan Coote and Kevin Naiqama also crossed for Saints, with Chris Clarkson and Greg Eden running in late replies.
Second-placed Warrington had reduced the gap to Saints to just four points with their win against Wigan in the final game on day one of the Magic Weekend, but Justin Holbrook’s side increased their lead again with their 15th win in 16 league games.
Castleford remain fifth as their aspirations of a play-off spot continue.
Saints raced through the first half at a canter and reached double figures in under 20 minutes, with Castleford struggling to find an answer to St Helens’ pace.
That both wings Makinson and Grace scored in quick succession before the game really got going was emblematic of just how unplayable Saints have been at times this season.
Saints were temporarily reduced to 12 men when captain James Roby was sent to the sin-bin for a robust tackle on Jake Trueman, much to the surprise to the St Helens fans in attendance, and Cas used their advantage quickly as Millington raced over the line.
But St Helens put the result beyond doubt when Ashworth’s try was easily converted by full-back Coote, who scored a try of his own as Saints coasted to victory.
The match brought Magic Weekend to a close for another season, with 56,869 in attendance across the two days to watch all 12 Super League clubs in action at the same venue.
It is the first time that Liverpool FC’s Anfield has held the event, with Newcastle United’s St James’s Park staging it in the previous four seasons.
St Helens head coach Justin Holbrook:
“It was very satisfying. We know how dangerous Castleford are and we played well for a good, dominant win.
“We had a great week, we looked up for it and we played like we should. It was great to watch.
“We are playing really well, the side is taking its opportunities, we are enjoying it and working hard. It was great to be a part of Magic Weekend.”
Castleford head coach Daryl Powell:
“I thought we had a real dig, but for us that’s where we are at the moment.
“I think we did see some signs, but we’re not durable enough within games, we get broken down too easily.
“We have a lot of boys missing, with no excuses, but I’m a little disappointed to be honest. You can’t take anything away from Saints.”
St Helens: Coote; Makinson, Naiqama, Costello, Grace; Lomax, Fages; Walmsley, Roby, Lees, Taia, Peyroux, Knowles.
Replacements: Paulo, Ashworth, Smith, Bentley.
Castleford: Mata’utia; Clare, Minikin, Blair, Eden; Ashton, Trueman; Watts, McShane, Smith, Millington, McMeeken, Milner.
Replacements: Cook, Maher, Rankin, Clarkson.
Referee: Robert Hicks