Justin Holbrook: Favourites tag doesn’t mean anything

Justin Holbrook said St Helens aren’t getting worked up about the pressure on them ahead of their Challenge Cup semi-final.

The Saints face Catalans Dragons at the University of Bolton Stadium in the Challenge Cup semi-final on Sunday, 12:30pm kick-off.

The bookmakers have Super League table toppers Saints as favourites to reach Wembley, but Holbrook says the team aren’t letting the pressure affect them.

He said: “The pressure is okay with us, it’s been there all year.

“We haven’t been to the final for 10 years and we know all that. We put ourselves in a position to nearly get there so it’s up to us now. The outside pressures don’t really affect us about us performing on Sunday to get to the final.

“There is a favourite but it doesn’t mean anything. Catalans have been playing great and they rested a heap of players against Wigan, and had 12 men and nearly beat them so they’ve got a lot of confidence and they’re playing really well.

“It’ll be a great event. I’m really looking forward to playing the semi-final on Sunday, it was good to experience a football game there before. I think Bolton played QPR when I was here with the [Sydney] Roosters the other year. It is a great stadium and I’m looking forward to playing here on Sunday.”

Holbrook also revealed that back-rower Dom Peyroux has been ruled out for six to eight weeks after suffering a broken arm in last week’s win over Warrington Wolves.

And Matty Lees is likely to come in for Peyroux on Sunday.

Holbrook said: “Dom Peyroux is no good for Sunday unfortunately.

“He has got a broken arm. He played the last 15 minutes last week with a broken arm. We always say tough guys play out game and he’s definitely one of them. He carried on and played the last 15 minutes so he won’t play this week.

“The physicality of our game is unbelievable. We all love football but someone can get hit on the head with a ball and be rolling on the ground for 15 minutes and then we’ve got guys playing on with a broken arm for another 15 minutes. It’s a gladiator sport and he’s going to be sorely missed.

“We’ve got Morgan Knowles who can play there and we could bring Matty Lees in. Dom will be greatly missed but we’ll bring Lees in.”

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