Justin Holbrook wanted Tommy Makinson to take Saints' match-winning kick
By PA Sport
Last Updated: 26/07/18 11:13pm
St Helens coach Justin Holbrook paid tribute to Danny Richardson for his monster match-winning penalty but revealed he had suggested a change of goalkicker.
The Super League derby against Warrington was brought to a tremendous climax when, with the scores locked at 12-12 and the final hooter sounding, Saints were awarded a penalty for a shoulder charge inside their own half.
Richardson had already missed with a drop-goal attempt but he maintained his composure to kick the 55-metre penalty and clinch a 14th straight win for his side.
Because of the distance involved, Holbrook had suggested the kick should have gone to Tommy Makinson, but he was persuaded by his assistant coach Sean Long to stick with the young half-back.
Holbrook said: "Longy has a lot of confidence in him because Tom Makinson kicks the ball a long way and I said 'we should give it to Tom to kick it'.
"But Longy said 'no Danny will kick this' and he did.
"It was outstanding for a young kid to have the confidence to step up at the end of the game and kick it.
"He's everything you want in a young player, you want them to back themselves and he gets it done."
Saints trailed 8-0 at half-time after conceding the only try of the first half to Daryl Clark but pulled level at 12-12 after the break thanks to tries from Ben Barba - his 23rd of the season - and Jonny Lomax before Richardson struck to ensure his side will take at least a 10-point lead into the Super 8s.
Before then, Holbrook's men take on Catalans Dragons for a place in the Challenge Cup final and the coach was delighted they will go into next Sunday's semi-final with their winning run intact.
"I'm really happy to win that game," Holbrook added. "Warrington are a good side, well-organised and well-coached and they came with a certain style of play that was allowed for the whole game, which was hard to watch.
"Full credit to our players to hang in there and find a way to win the game, it was fantastic. It was an important win for us."
Warrington defended superbly in the first half to keep the leaders scoreless and had three late chances to win the game with drop goals.
"I'm really proud of the guys," said coach Steve Price. "I thought the effort was outstanding. We had three or four field goal attempts to win the game but we couldn't finish it off.
"I thought it was a good old tough game of football, with two quality teams going hard at it, and in the end there was not much between them.
"It was end to end and I'm sure the spectators enjoyed it.
"Full credit to St Helens, that's why they are where they are, they're a quality football team.
"We will take a lot of confidence out of that. We'll dust ourselves off, we've a really important game against Leeds next week."