St Helens have offered Theo Fages new contract, confirms Justin Holbrook

Photo courtesy of Richard Long

St Helens coach Justin Holbrook has confirmed the club have offered in-demand playmaker Theo Fages a contract extension. 

The France international is off-contract at the end of the season, and an impressive start to the season has seen several NRL clubs show interest in him.

But Holbrook insists Saints want him to stay at the club, and have tabled Fages a new deal.

Speaking after their 36-24 win over Hull Kingston Rovers, Holbrook said: “All I know is that we have offered him a deal and we want him to stay, so now it is up to him.

“As I have said previously, with those [speculation] reports, they can come from different people and different angles, but that sort of stuff is out of our hands. We want him to stay and it is up to him to decide now. We will see how that pans out, he has been fantastic for us this season.

“He only played 20 minutes tonight so I will have a word with him about that! He is a tidy player and if we could get him to stay then that would be awesome.

“I’ve been impressed with him since pre-season and that’s why I started with him this year. He has been great every single week for us and the way him, Jonny [Lomax] and Lachlan [Coote] have played together has been brilliant and he is a large part of why we have started so well.”

Saints were without experienced players James Roby, Alex Walmsley, Zeb Taia and Mark Percival in Friday’s victory over Hull KR.

And Holbrook revealed Walmsley didn’t play due to his wife going into labour, two years after he was emergency substituted against Wakefield when his wife had their first child!

Holbrook added: Percy [Mark Percival] was sick, Robes [James Roby] had some niggles, Zeb [Taia] has just had a baby and Alex Walmsley was going to play but he left the ground at 6:30pm to rush to his wife having a baby!

“There was a chance in him having to leave last week’s game and I thought he might have to go last week but it is a similar story to his first baby a few years ago.

“He left the ground with 15 minutes to go against Wakefield a few years ago, but he took the soft option tonight and left before the game… I’ll have to have a word with his wife about the timing!”

Holbrook confirmed all four players will be available for next Saturday’s trip to Catalans Dragons.

Saints half-back Theo Fages left the field midway through the first half and didn’t return with a hip injury, but the club do not know the extent of the injury just yet.

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