Sam Tomkins pays classy tribute to James Roby: ‘Most consistent player over the last 15 years’

Drew Darbyshire
James Roby St Helens and Sam Tomkins Catalans Dragons Alamy

Catalans Dragons star Sam Tomkins paid tribute to the retiring James Roby, saying the St Helens skipper been the most consistent player in Super League over the last 15 years.

Tomkins produced a stunning clutch play to score the match-winning try that sealed a 12-6 win for Catalans against St Helens in the Super League semi-finals, sending the Dragons to the Grand Final at Old Trafford next week.

Roby bowed out of his legendary 20-year playing career following Saints’ defeat in Perpignan – but he and Tomkins shared a heartwarming interview with Sky Sports reporter Jenna Brooks before kick-off.

When asked about the retiring Roby, Tomkins said: “I think he’ll be remembered as the most consistent player over the last 15 years.

“We play a very tough sport and the toughest position to play is at nine and that’s where Robes has been for a lot longer than most people can even dream of.

“There’s not many players I think over that length of time can consistently stay one of the best players on the field every week and that’s certainly what Robes has done.

“I went into England camp and got to play alongside him and you get a true appreciation of exactly what he does because he just turns up everywhere you need somebody and mops a lot of stuff up.

“He’s had a lot of success at St Helens and I’m sure the club wouldn’t have been quite as successful without him.”

‘He’s been a fantastic player for so many years’ – James Roby pays compliments to Sam Tomkins

Tomkins’ career will go on for one more week, with the Dragons facing the winner of Saturday’s other semi-final between his former club Wigan and Hull KR at Old Trafford next weekend.

When asked about Tomkins, Roby told Sky Sports: “When he broke through into that Wigan team he used to terrorise us for years as such a young lad with the things he could do, how he could get out of tackles, he’d create tries and score tries.

“He’s been a fantastic player for so many years.

“Obviously he went to the NRL, came back and obviously continues to play just as well here at Catalans.

“There’s no coincidence that the upturn and consistency of Catalans over the past few years has been down to Sam’s arrival.”

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