Graham: It's make or break
James Graham believes the Easter period could "make or break" St Helens' season.
Last Updated: 09/04/09 9:50am
England forward James Graham believes the Easter period could "make or break" St Helens' season.
Mick Potter's in-form men have the chance to pull away from champions Leeds Rhinos at the top of the Super League standings against Wigan on Thursday night.
Two wins in a fortnight over Leeds have kept Saints well on track for a league and cup double, but with Hull and high-flying Castleford to come the 23-year-old is taking nothing for granted.
The annual fixture glut tests the resources of all clubs but Saints are noticeably thin on experience and the absence of Sean Long, Jason Cayless and Chris Flannery will increase the pressure on the club's youngsters.
Teenagers Kyle Eastmond, Gareth Frodsham, Matty Ashurst and Jonny Lomax and 21-year-old Chris Dean are all set to feature over Easter and Graham knows much is expected of them.
"We've got a massive Easter programme," he said. "Obviously there is the big derby against Wigan, followed by a very good Hull side and Cas who are in form as well.
"The next three games could be make or break for us and we're going to rely a lot on our squad. A few of the young lads are going to have to step up."
Former St Helens favourite Martin Gleeson will make his first start at the JJB since moving to Wigan from Warrington, meanwhile.
And the 28-year-old England centre acknowledges the pressure will be on his shoulders in particular.
"There are expectations but hopefully I can enjoy myself and perform well for the team," he said.
"I like a bit of pressure but, if you are enjoying yourself, the results take care of themselves."