Category: Rugby

Jackson Hastings | “It’s an exciting time”

Earlier today Salford Red Devils confirmed the signing of Australian halfback Jackson Hastings for the remainder of the season and we caught up with the 22-year-old ahead of his move to the AJ Bell Stadium in an exclusive interview.
Hastings said: “I absolutely can’t wait to get over and get stuck into training, meet the boys, coaching staff and the wonderful fans – it’s an exciting time.
“I’m looking forward to keeping this Club where it belongs and that is in the Betfred Super League.
“But, first and foremost, my first goal is to rip in to training and show my new teammates and coaches that I’m a winner by training as hard as I can, preparing as well as I can and taking each game as it comes.”


“I know quite a bit about the Betfred Super League as I’m a huge Rugby League fan in general and always get up early to watch the televised games from abroad.
“I really respect and admire how good some of the players that the competition has produced are and I’m lucky I’ll now get the chance to mingle and play against them.”
Hastings will look to add another dimension to the Red Devils attack in the final few months of the 2018 campaign and is a vocal and creative halfback.
“I think my communication on the field has always been a natural strong point in my game. If you’re playing at 6, 7, 9 or 1 you are the voice of the team and need to be good at that,” Hastings said.
He added: “Competitiveness is something I base my game around and I pride myself on competing on every play no matter the result and doing all that I can to ensure the team gets the result we are looking for.
“The last major part would be my passing and kicking game. It’s something I work hard on and love seeing my team mates score or create opportunities off a nicely weighted kick or a nice sharp pass.
“I’ll do my best to bring this and more to the Club!”


The 22-year-old has played in England before with the Roosters and has already had a taste of life in around the Salford and Manchester area.
Hastings said: “I’ve been over before with my most recent trip coming three years ago with Sydney Roosters when we faced St Helens in the World Club Challenge series.
“I loved Manchester, especially the shopping. England is a great part of the world and I’m lucky to have family from and still living there at the moment.
“I have a lot of mates from rival clubs too, so hopefully I get the opportunity to get one up on them.”
The Australian halfback has impressed at both Sydney Roosters and Manly Sea Eagles and admits he has taken inspiration from two legends of the Betfred Super League.
Hastings said: “From an English standpoint I loved Kevin Sinfield and Danny McGuire as a kid. Leeds were a dominate team and were constantly on TV in Australia.
“As those two played similar positions to me I admired how good those two were and obviously Danny still to this day has all the tricks in the book.
“The big one was Johnathan Thurston. Everything that he did and still brings to the table is something I truly admire and respect.
“He’s a once in a generation player and I still can’t believe I’ll get to say I played against him.
“I can’t wait to get over and join the Salford Red Devils.”

 

Salford win Battle for Hastings

Salford Red Devils have swooped to sign Aussie half-back star Jackson Hastings from the NRL, initially for the remainder of the season.
Hastings is awaiting final visa clearance and will link up with the Red Devils for the vital close of the campaign.
Salford’s Director of Rugby Ian Blease said: “Jackson is a signing that should rightly excite everybody in the city. He is an exciting match-winner and will slot into our set-up perfectly at this crucial time.
“A huge amount of hard-work behind the scenes has gone into making this happen over the past few months and we are delighted to get it over the line. Opportunities to sign players this talented do not come along too often and it speaks volumes that we have beaten off some serious competition for his signature.
“I’d like to thank the player’s agent for all his help as well as Marwan Koukash who has honoured his pledge to support the club with the acquisition of a player.”
22-year-old Hastings already has 47 NRL appearances to his name for the Sydney Roosters and Manly Sea Eagles and has bagged 81 points in the process.
Salford Red Devils expect the player will join them at the AJ Bell Stadium as soon as his paperwork is complete in Australia.
Head Coach Ian Watson said: “He’s a huge talent with huge potential. The fact Trent Robinson let Maloney leave the Roosters so Jackson could partner Mitchell Pearce shows his level of quality.
“Obviously there were numerous Super League clubs chasing him and we are delighted he has chosen to come to us. Hopefully together we can restart Jackson’s first grade career
“He has been the guy we have been missing in terms of organisation and kicking game. He’s looking forward to getting over here and getting stuck in, concluded Watson.
Ian Blease continued, “It’s been a tough transitional year for the Club and we continue to need all the support we can get from our fans and get them to bring a friend along to the game on Friday against Castleford Tigers (kick off 8pm, AJ Bell Stadium). It is vital we stay in Super League this year and the signing of Jackson Hastings shows that we are very serious about this aim.”
 
 
 
 

Event | Book your place at the Lance Todd Award Dinner

Salford Red Devils Foundation are now taking bookings for the most prestigious event in Rugby League – The Lance Todd Award Dinner.
The event will take place at Marriot Worlsey on Tuesday 28th August between 7pm and 11pm and will be hosted by Rugby League legends and former Salford players Robbie Hunter-Paul and Paul Highton.
Dr Kevin Jones will also be a guest speaker at the event which will see the Man of the Match from the Ladbrokes Challenge Cup final receive his trophy. Hull FC’s Marc Sneyd has won for the last two seasons becoming the first player to even win outright it in consecutive seasons.
You can purchase a ‘Todd Table’ now for £750. The ‘Todd Tables’ include access to the VIP room, drinks service on arrival, wine on your table, three-course meals and there will also be an ex-Lance Todd trophy winner sat on your table. ‘Todd Tables’ seat nine persons as well as your Rugby League legend.
If you’d like to experience the event in style alongside a Ladbrokes Challenge Cup final legend, then this is the perfect package for you.
However, regular tables can also be booked for £550. This package includes three-course meals and drinks service on arrival. Regular tables seat ten persons. Individuals can also book a seat for £55 which includes a three-course meal.
To book please contact John.Blackburn@salfordreddevils.net or call 07762 732790.

Squad | Ian Watson names his 19-man squad for visit of Castleford

Salford Red Devils Head Coach Ian Watson has named his 19-man squad to take on Castleford Tigers at the AJ Bell Stadium on Friday evening, 8pm kick-off. 
Ed Chamberlain retains his place in the squad after making his first start for the Red Devils at Hull Kingston Rovers last Sunday. Levy Nzoungou is also named in the 19-man squad again and could feature on Friday evening.
Ben Nakubuwai – who was the 18th man against Hull Kingston Rovers – could move back into the team after being listed in this week’s squad. Josh Jones and Tyrone McCarthy will continue in the squad after making a successful returns last weekend.
Greg Johnson misses out after picking up a foot injury this past weekend against Hull Kingston Rovers while Logan Tomkins has also picked up a foot injury and will be absent for Friday’s game.
Jack Littlejohn is out with a ruptured bicep but did undergo successful surgery last Saturday. Niall Evalds and Kriss Brining are also still recovering from injuries.
Craig Kopczak and Luke Burgess are both named but are unlikely to feature after carrying knocks in recent weeks.
The Tigers are in Town, but we’ll roar louder! 
Tickets for our next home game against Castleford Tigers on Friday 13th July are available to purchase at the Club Ticket Office, over the phone or online here.
The full squad can be seen below:

Stadium | Fans Bar to close on matchdays

Salford Red Devils can confirm that the Fans Bar area will now be closed on gamedays with the AJ Bell Stadium renting the area out as office space. 
Salford Red Devils will now be focusing all our pre and post-match entertainment in DJ Andy Steele’s matchday marquee. Get in the marquee and enjoy the entertainment!
Toilet facilities will be provided in the South Stand.
This will begin with Friday evening’s Betfred Super League clash with Castleford Tigers, 8pm kick-off.
The Tigers are in Town!
But we’ll roar louder – buy your tickets for Friday’s game against Castleford by visiting the Club Ticket Office, ringing 0161 786 1570 or simply clicking here.
 
 

Ian Watson | “We totally fell away from it”

Head Coach Ian Watson was disappointed to see his side move away from the processes – which saw them start strongly against Hull Kingston Rovers – after the hosts crossed the Red Devils line.
Watson said: “We started as well as we have done for a while.
“We were in control dominating field position and as soon as a little bit of pressure came on us we totally fell away from it.
“Hull KR just turned the tide. We were having a real arm-wrestle for that first twenty minutes and we got our nose in front and just needed to stick with the processes which we were doing really well early on.
“But then a few errors and them going the length of the field from our kick turned the tide and that’s when you need a little bit of resilience and we didn’t have it.
“Hull KR were outstanding. Their packed rolled our pack and they beat us in all areas to be honest.”
Ian Watson’s full post-match press conference can be seen below:

Match Report | Hull Kingston Rovers 52-22 Salford Red Devils

Salford Red Devils fell at the hands of Hull Kingston Rovers as the hosts ran out comfortable 52-22 winners on a disappointing afternoon at KCOM Craven Park.
A double from Junior Sa’u alongside further scores from Greg Johnson and Jake Bibby weren’t enough for the Red Devils to secure the points as the hosts proved far too hot to handle after producing a clinical 9 try display.
Salford made a bright start to the contest. First, Jake Bibby forced Junior Vaivai into touch to thwart an attack, before Tyrone McCarthy went agonisingly close to scoring after dropping the ball inside the in-goal area.
The Red Devils’ efforts were rewarded soon after though as Johnson collected a short ball from Robert Lui, before bulldozing himself over the whitewash, with just eight minutes on the clock.
Ed Chamberlain was making his first start for the club and marked the occasion after converting the resulting goal to give the Reds a deserved six-point lead.
The hosts soon responded though as Adam Quinlan picked out Ryan Shaw with a sublime looping pass, and the onrushing Shaw made no mistake to cross over in the corner.
Shaw then converted his own effort with a goal from the right-hand touchline to level the scoring.
Salford then built some momentum but would concede next, completely against the run of play. Lui attempted to keep the set alive after flicking Jake Shorrocks’ high kick into the path of McCarthy, but unfortunately, Quinlan was first to pick up the loose ball and raced 90m to score a stunning individual effort.
Danny Tickle kicked the resulting goal and Rovers extended their lead further five minutes later as Will Oakes finished off a well-worked team move in the left hand-corner, before Tickle added the extras to increase the margin to 12 points.
Things quickly worsened for the Red Devils as Danny McGuire’s kick bounced over Lui’s head to allow James Greenwood to ground the ball before it fell dead – Tickle then added the extras.
Two minutes later, the hosts were in again. This time, McGuire turned scorer and scooped up the loose ball after the ball had ricocheted into his path. Tickle then converted the resulting goal to take KR up to the 30-point mark.
Unfortunately for Salford, Rovers crossed over for their sixth effort just a minute later. After breaking down the right-hand side, Maurice Blair flicked inside to Joel Tomkins who finished under the sticks, before Tickle added the extras in the final point-scoring action of the half.
After the break, it was Salford who’d score next. Lui picked out Derrell Olpherts with a lofted kick before the latter offloaded to Junior Sa’u who surged his way over – Chamberlain was unable to land the resulting goal as the ball fell wide of the posts.
Hull almost claimed a sensational breakaway try, but a piece of heroic defending from Jake Bibby prevented Nick Scruton from touching down.
They weren’t to be denied for long though, two minutes later Shaun Lunt’s kick caused mayhem amongst the Devils backline, McGuire was quickest to react and dived over.
The hosts were in a ruthless mood and found themselves over again soon after. This time, Oakes claimed his second after the ball was worked out wide.
McGuire then threw a dummy which outwitted the Salford defence and allowed him to slide over under the sticks to compete his hat-trick. Tickle then added the conversion to take the hosts past the 50-point mark.
Salford responded with a consolation effort of their own as Sa’u pierced through the KR line to cross over, before Chamberlain landed the subsequent goal.
The Red Devils weren’t finished there though, some quick hands from Lui and Josh Wood helped forge an opening for Bibby to cross over in the corner, before Chamberlain added his third goal to take Salford past the 20-point mark.
Hull KR Lineup: Quinlan, Shaw, Blair, Vaivai, Oakes, McGuire, Atkin, Scruton, Lee, Tickle, Greenwood, J. Tomkins, Kavanagh.
Interchanges: Lunt, Masoe, Donaldson, Mulhern.
Salford Lineup: Chamberlain, Johnson, Bibby, Sa’u, Olpherts, Lui, Shorrocks, Tasi, Wood, Mossop, Lannon, McCarthy, Flanagan.
Interchanges: L. Tomkins, Burke, Murray, Jones.
Hull KR Scorers: Tries- Shaw (14’), Quinlan (21’), Oakes (27’, 55’), Greenwood (32’), McGuire (35’, 50’, 58’), J. Tomkins (37’) | Goals- Shaw (15’), Tickle (22’, 28’, 33’, 36’, 38’, 51’, 59’)
Salford Scorers: Tries- Johnson (8’), Sa’u (44’, 60’), Bibby (77’) | Goals- Chamberlain (9’, 61’, 78’)
Referee: Gareth Hewer.
Attendance: 7,698.

Squad | Ian Watson names 19-man to take on KR at KCOM Craven Park

Head Coach Ian Watson has named his 19-man squad for Sunday’s Betfred Super League tie with Hull Kingston Rovers at KCOM Craven Park.
Ed Chamberlain could be set to make his first start since arriving at Salford last month. Josh Jones returns to the side following an ankle issue while Tyrone McCarthy is also named after a stint on the sideline.
Levy Nzoungou is named in the squad and could make his second Betfred Super League appearance for the Red Devils. Greg Johnson may also return to the starting seventeen.
Jack Littlejohn is absent and is set to undergo surgery on a ruptured bicep on Saturday while Kris Welham is recovering from surgery on a finger injury.
Craig Kopczak is still struggling with an injured quadricep as confirmed by Ian Watson in last week’s post-match press conference which can be seen here.
Niall Evalds and Kriss Brining both remain sidelined.
Here is the squad in full:

Ian Watson | “The circumstances make it an interesting game”

Any trip over the Pennines into Yorkshire invariably heralds the most challenging of encounters for virtually all Lancashire outfits, and exactly one month to the day since their last sojourn over to the rugby league outreach which is Hull, the Red Devils make a return visit this Sunday, to the eastern side of the city to take on Hull KR.
The context of this encounter, however, could not possibly be more significant to either club, as Head Coach, Ian Watson, is all too aware.
“The circumstances make it an extremely interesting game, taking into account the current league placings, with us currently sitting just one place above them at tenth and eleventh. So, for us, it is a really big game where we must try to stretch this lead over them and also pull back on the teams just above us.
“Never say, ‘Never’, because we have got our confidence back, as we have shown over the past two and a half games, when we have played more like ourselves. We have been better in both defence and attack.
“We have been focussing on the improvements we have made over this period, and on maintaining them.”
Craven Park is a particularly intimidating venue, with its being a bridge, in style, between the old type of stadia, such as The Willows, with the spectators very close to the pitch, and the modern facilities of the AJ Bell.
“They even have their own version of the Shed, where long-time fans like to go and watch. But then there are the more modern parts.
“It’s a good place to go to play in, because it’s a rugby stadium through and through, and they have a good fan base to go with it.
“We are focusing on this next game, and then moving forward from there. We have beaten Hull KR already this season, and this, together with their home advantage is going to spur them on, so we must meet their challenge on the day. We have to focus on winning each game as it comes along.
“When he was at Wakefield, Brian Smith took that other view, and that might be an option with a squad of forty, but with only twenty-one there are just not enough players to do this.
“Everyone will have their own way of addressing the challenge. Ours is to continue in the way we have been doing in the last few weeks – gaining further confidence in our execution in both attack and defence. We have conceded some soft tries so we need to ensure Hull KR, and the remaining teams we still have to face, do not get any.”
For the early period of the second half, in last week’s outing at Warrington, the Red Devils appeared to have taken complete control of the game – a development seemingly sparked by the ten minute reduction to twelve men, with the sin-binning of Ryan Lannon. This inspired them not only to prevent Warrington from scoring during this period, but also to cross, themselves, with the second of Jack Littlejohn’s tries.
“Up to that point, Warrington had been finishing their sets a little better than we had, which had helped them territorially, but sometimes a sinbinning can give you the shot you need to get back into the game.
“Earlier this year, we were allowing such things to totally deflate us, but the confidence in how we are now playing has rejuvenated the whole side.”
A noticeably growing injury list is now starting to deprive the team of an increasing number of players, which could mean that some of the younger players will have to shoulder more of the responsibilities.
“All teams get injuries, and we have had a lot of niggling, short-term injuries which has prevented us turning out a settled team week after week. We had just been getting some consistency and now we are going to be disrupted again.
“Some of the younger players who have recently returned to the team, such as Dan Murray, Jake Bibby, and Ryan Lannon have all earned their places back, and any player who performs well will continue to hold down their position.”