Danny Richardson is expecting a tough test in the Super League Super 8s
St Helens half-back Danny Richardson is ready for the “business end of the season” after the fixtures and live games were announced for the Super League Super 8s.
Saints finished top of the table at the end of the regular season, 10 points clear of second-placed rivals Wigan Warriors after 23 rounds of gruelling matches.
Richardson is ready for the final push as they look to secure their place in the Grand Final at Old Trafford on October 13, although first St Helens take on Catalans Dragons in the semi-final of the Challenge Cup Final on Saturday.
“We’ve had a tough run of games but we’ve managed to win the last 14,” he told Sky Sports News.
“The Super 8s are coming and everyone steps up a gear and we’ll expect ourselves to step up a gear as well. The games will be more intense and no doubt harder.”
Justin Holbrook took over from club legend Keiron Cunningham as head coach in April 2017 and the Australian has helped turn their fortunes around.
“He’s pretty much stripped everything down and gone back to basics,” added Richardson, who kicked a late penalty kick from his own half to secure a 14-12 win over Warrington on July 26.
“He’s got everyone enjoying their rugby again and got everyone confident about their own roles and the results are paying off on the pitch.
“We’ve won nothing yet but as an individual, I have had quite a good year. I’ve managed to play in every Super League game and every Challenge Cup game this year.
“We’ve only lost two all year. We’ve won nothing yet but we have the Challenge Cup this weekend and a run of games that is at the business end of the season.”
St Helens play Catalans in the first of a Challenge Cup double-header at the Macron Stadium in Bolton on Saturday, followed by Warrington v Leeds, with Richardson taking nothing for granted against a rejuvenated Dragons side.
2:21 St Helens 14-12 Warrington
“It’s going to be massive test against a good Catalans side. They’re firing on all cylinders now and they’ve got a good coach,” he said.
“We need to bring our ‘A’ game. It will be a massive test and it’s a good event at the Macron Stadium, a double-header, and I am sure it will be packed out with lots of fans.
“We just need to focus on that game all week and come firing on Sunday.”