As St Helens step up their preparations for Saturday’s clash against St George Illawarra Dragons and the subsequent World Club Challenge showdown with NRL champions Penrith Panthers, head coach Paul Wellens and his boys have had time to relax from the rigours of training by visiting a couple of Australian landmarks .
They called-in at the iconic Sydney Cricket Ground where Sir Don Bradman conjured up so many centuries and deadly duo Jeff Thompson and Dennis Lillee scared the pants off England’s top order batsmen in several Ashes series.
The party were also invited to view the multi-million pound facility of Sydney Swans - five-times winner of the VFL/AFC.
Wellens said: “The Swans have recently moved into their new $70 million training facility and we were lucky enough to have a look around. Their new site houses all of their teams, including their basketball sides and serves as a base for all day-to-day operations.”
Centre Mark Percival said: “The last time I visited the cricket ground was on a previous academy tour about 11 or 12 years ago but it’s great to be back.”
Half back Jonny Lomax, who first made a tour Down Under with the academy around 17 years ago, said: “Nice to be here again and record the occasion on camera. It is an unforgettable experience, especially for he younger lads in the squad, who will benefit as players in the long term.”