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World Cup is great preparation for Masoe’s Saints career
MOSE Masoe’s World Cup campaign will be ideal preparation for his first season in Saints’ colours.
Having never stepped outside the southern hemisphere before, the 24-year-old man mountain can get an early feel for the English weather, grounds, crowds and lifestyle before bringing his young family over in the new year.
But he and his Samoan teammates also want to create a better impression of Samoan playing standards after the hefty 52-16 loss to England Knights in Saturday’s World Cup warm-up game at Salford.
Masoe, dubbed the Smiling Assassin and signed for two years from Penrith Panthers, goes into Sunday’s battle with holders New Zealand at Warrington seemingly content with his own performance though.
It was a display off the bench of powerful running and thumping hits, one of which did not go down too well with Leeds Rhinos young forward Brad Singleton and a brawl ensued.
“I’m all about impact,” said former Junior Kiwi Masoe in an exclusive interview with St Helens Star.
“I try to change the momentum of a game and although I felt I did all right against a tough England Knights side I probably didn’t help much on the side when we were 18 points down so I’ve got to work on that this week.”
He felt there were reasons behind the disappointing showing from Samoa, who included St Helens’ Sia Soliola – a former teammate of Masoe at Sydney Roosters -in the back row.
“We had 26 players to rotate because it was our trial, so we couldn’t really work the combinations,” he said.
“We need to pick up on little things, work on our ruck defence and we’ll pull together I reckon.”
He is clearly looking forward so much to joining Saints, who he says have been a huge help in the moving process.
“I want to gain experience and stay fit while I’m over here in preparation for next year,” he said.
“A lot of the players who have come over here say it’s pretty tough, with Super League getting up there alongside the NRL.
“Sia’s been talking it up and I’m excited about coming – I like the cold.
“Me and Sia have the same agent, so the deal might have worked out that way.
“Anyway, the opportunity came and I wasn’t going to turn it down.
“Nathan Brown (Saints coach) has given me a couple of calls, helping me out with my visa and stuff, which was pretty cool.
“The club has been really helpful too with the visas and sorting out the house and car for when I get over here.
“They are making things easy for me, which is really good. I’ll be going home to pick up my missus Carissa, son Benson (aged five) and daughter Eavie (aged six months) and then coming back. We just want to experience it. We’ve heard it’s a lot of fun over here.”
But for now the focus is Samoa, who are based in Warrington for the tournament.
“I felt we took England Knights a bit lightly and I was amazed how good they were,” he said.
“We’ve just got to treat every team as a threat. Next up is the current world champions and it’s going to be a tough one.”
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