Four ways St Helens could replace Regan Grace - Rugby League News

Four ways St Helens could replace Regan Grace – Rugby League News

Since bursting onto the scene with a first try in the Wigan and Saints derby in 2017, Regan Grace has established himself as one of the Super League’s best wingers.

Now a three-time Super League champion, two-time League Leaders’ Shield winner and Challenge Cup winner, Grace’s time in the Super League is coming to an end after months of speculation.

It comes as St Helens confirm he will join Racing 92 at the end of the season. A great player unlike anyone in the Super League, how will St Helens replace a player of his quality? That’s the question we answer today with four options for St Helens to consider for 2023.

Tempting a Super League rival
There is no better club to join now than St Helens. They are the three-time defending champions and on their way to a fourth title despite some key defeats like Lewis Dodd. They are at the top of the standings and their dominance does not seem to be weakening. So almost any Super League winger could be tempted to join them as Grace’s replacement. Castleford’s Greg Eden is still available if the Saints want to take a punt on the left winger who scores for free. Unfortunately for the Champions, it looks like they missed out on the ideal Tom Johnstone replacement who is expected to join the Catalans. Perhaps the versatile Jake Wardle who recently joined Warrington on loan should also be an option.

Dive into the NRL market
St Helens have had a lot of success in terms of NRL signings recently. Lachlan Coote, Sione Mata’utia, Will Hopoate, Joey Lussick, Kevin Naiqama and Curtis Sironen to name a few. Turning to this market again, they might find a ready-made replacement for Grace with experience bags. However, the Saints have currently filled all of their quota spots and would therefore need to offload one of their current stars to do so, which seems unlikely at present.

The Tongan Connection
One could quite easily argue that this problem could be solved without recruitment. Konrad Hurrell’s future at St Helens is secure and he has shone at the club this year establishing himself at centre-right while Tongan team-mate Will Hopoate has bounced around in a number of positions. Hopoate has years of experience on the wing in the NRL. So, perhaps the best decision would be to turn him into a winger and trust Konrad Hurrell as the first-choice right centre. The Saints have depth in this area thanks to Ben Davies, Josh Simm and Jon Bennison. Speaking of what…

The path of the saints
The Saints’ path has always been to take another player off the production line and Regan Grace’s replacement could be the last on that production line in Jon Bennison. He’s played very well on the wing and at fullback this year and he’s elusive and nimble like Grace. By entrusting him with the number five jersey, the Saints would prepare for the next decade and not just the next season.

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