NEIL Jukes has thrown down the gauntlet to his Betfred Super League super heroes to prove the 24-16 victory over Saints was no fluke.
That means backing-up a first top flight victory since 2005 at World Series champions Wigan on Friday.
Captain Marvel Micky Higham’s 66th minute try settled a high octane derby clash liberally sprinkled with penalties, big hits, seven tries scored and several not given.
It all added up to Centurions’ historic victory; their first over their visitors since 1994.
“I remember after ‘Cas’ saying we will either sink or swim,” said Jukes after Leigh delighted home fans in a bumper LSV crowd of 9,012.
“Against Leeds we kept our head above water and kind of did a doggy paddle. This time we swam and it is important we swim again this week and again. If you don’t you will get blown away.
“We have spoken about backing up big performances and being a consistent side.
“Everyone keeps saying Super League is all about backing up. That’s what we have got to keep challenging this team to do starting with Wigan away.
“They are the world champions and it is the first time their fans will welcome them back. But the North Stand here is as good as you will see anywhere.”
The joint was definitely jumping as Leigh came out of the traps like greyhounds against opponents decidedly sluggish after a two-week break.
Ex Saint Atelea Vea, Gareth Hock and Jamie Acton touched down in front of the stunned St Helens travelling contingent. Ben Reynolds goaled all three.
Ryan Morgan and James Roby were denied possible tries by Ben Thaler before Adam Swift plunged over in the corner.
The comeback gained momentum when Roby grounded successfully 16 minutes after the re-start.
Instead, Higham marked his first Super League outing of 2017 with the crucial try. So, even when Alex Walmsley scored Saints’ third and James Green was sin binned for a high tackle, Leigh had sufficient in reserve to see the game out.
“We got off to a great start and probably could have posted more points in that first half,” said jubilant Jukes.
“Effort wise, we were incredible. The amount of times we got under bodies and kept out feet moving was brilliant.
“We were a bit scratchy towards the back end of the second half but we hung in through our defence.
“It hit home against Leeds we have got to get through poor periods better without having as many points posted against us.
“So we have to keep playing our way out of trouble and just keep challenging them with the ball. When we do that defence becomes that bit easier.”
Leigh: Brown; Higson, Crooks, Tonga, Dawson; Reynolds, Drinkwater; Hock, Higham, Green, Paterson, Vea, Hansen. Subs: Pelissier, Tickle, Hopkins, Acton.
Saints: Lomax; Makinson, Morgan, Percival, Swift; Fages, Richardson; Amor, Lee, Douglas, McCarthy-Scarsbrook, Peyroux, Wilkin; Subs: Walmsley, 9. Roby, Thompson, Knowles.
Attendance: 9, 012