This weekend Salford travel to Halifax in their third Qualifiers fixture of 2018 however it’s not the first trip to the MBi Shay in this competition.
We take a look back to 2015 when the Red Devils earned a 50-28 victory over Fax in a back-and-forth game, almost three years to the day of Sunday’s fixture.
In a high-scoring affair, three Red Devils managed to cross for hat-tricks with Niall Evalds, Ben Jones-Bishop and Greg Johnson all notching three tries apiece. Josh Griffin and Michael Dobson shared kicking duties kicking four and three goals, respectively.
Dobson created an opening in the early stages to send Evalds over to get the scoring underway before Johnson broke down the left-hand to further the Red Devils lead. Another Evalds try shortly after continued Salford’s dominance.
Halifax refused to lie down and managed to get themselves on the scoresheet through Dane Manning. However, the hosts would go into the break trailing 6-22 after Johnson scored his second before fellow winger Jones-Bishop opened his account for the afternoon.
George Griffin had a try disallowed just after the restart and Halifax capitalised as Scott Murrell collected his own kick to score. However, almost immediately, Evalds managed to scoop up a loose ball and race fifty metres to be the first Red Devil to complete their hat-trick.
The hosts again hit back as Jacob Fairbank went under the posts on the back of a break from Connor Robinson but three consecutive tries from Salford killed any hopes of a Fax comeback.
Jones-Bishop went the length of the field before Johnson followed up with another long-range try for his third. Jones-Bishop also notched his hat-trick in the closing stages on a rampant afternoon in attack for the Red Devils. Adam Tangata did grab a late consolation for Halifax.
The victory marked Salford’s third win in their opening four games of the 2015 Qualifiers after wins against Wakefield Trinity and Leigh Centurions.
The teams that day:
Halifax: Martin, Heaton, Eccleston, Tyrer, Saltonstall; C. Robinson, Murrell; Tangata, Kaye, Calahane, Moore, Manning, Fairbank.
Interchanges: Bracek, Maneely, A. Robinson, Ambler.
Salford: Evalds, Jones-Bishop, Thornley, J. Griffin, Johnson; Lee, Dobson; Taylor, Tomkins, G. Griffin, Hansen, Maitua, Paterson.
Interchanges: Krasniqi, Forster, J. Walne, Hood.
Ahead of this weekend’s Betfred Super League clash between Catalans Dragons and Salford Red Devils in Perpignan, we take a look back at one of Salford’s most memorable visits to the Stade Gilbert Brutus in this week’s ‘Flashback’.
The Red Devils travelled to the south of France with just one win from their opening three fixtures in the 2015 Super League season. Iestyn Harris’ men had pipped Hull FC 32-28 at the AJ Bell Stadium, but had suffered defeats to both Warrington Wolves and St Helens.
Catalans meanwhile, had also fallen to the hands of the Saints but had gone one better than Salford, having picked up two victories over Warrington and Castleford Tigers.
However, it was Salford who started brightest. The Red Devils flew out of the blocks to race into a 22-0 lead and silence the lively Catalan crowd.
It took just just three minutes for the visitors to register their first try, Junior Sa’u collected a short ball from Tommy Lee before bulldozing himself over the whitwash.
Josh Griffin failed to land the resulting conversion, but he quickly forgot about his miss when Cory Paterson picked up a loose ball and sent him over 11 minutes later – Griffin added the first of his 6 goals.
Paterson then turned scorer two minutes later, Frenchman Theo Fages found the Australian with an inside pass before Paterson bounced off three Catalans defenders to touch down.
Salford were in a ruthless mood and soon found themselves over again. This time Lee threw a quick dummy to deceive the Dragons’ line and slid over, before Griffin added the extras to give Salford a 22-0 lead with less than 20 minutes on the clock.
The hosts regrouped however and claimed their first score of the contest as a neat pass from Todd Carney invited Zeb Taia to power his way over, despite the best efforts of Rangi Chase.
Catalans then hit back with two quick-fire efforts through Vincent Duport and Ben Pomeroy, Scott Dureau converted both scores.
Salford were 22-18 ahead at the break and it was the Red Devils who struck first in the second period as Fages returned to haunt his former club. After capitalising on an Elliot Whitehead error, the France international raced the length of the pitch to score three minutes into the half.
Pomeroy replied with his second from close-range, but Salford regained the lead through Chase as Kevin Locke palmed his own kick back to him as the half-back crossed over unchallenged and extend Salford’s lead.
Michael Oldfield touched down in the corner to reduce the arrears before Dureau landed the extras before adding a subsequent penalty to level the scores at 32-32.
Catalans thought they’d snatched victory when Whitehead made up for his earlier mistake and scored in the corner before Ian Henderson touched down was in 8 minutes from time.
Dureau’s failure to convert both came back to haunt the hosts as Paterson grabbed his second before Griffin converted the score and added a last minute penalty to rescue a dramatic draw for the Red Devils.
Then Salford Head Coach, Iestyn Harris, said: “To come away from Catalans and get a point is really pleasing, to concede 40 points is not.
“We didn’t handle the periods when they had momentum. I think if we had managed that, we would have won the game rather convincingly. We need to work on our game-management skills.
“With us being eight points behind with five minutes to go, if someone offered those circumstances and to take a point, I think there are a lot of teams who would take a point in those situations.”
The teams that day:
Catalans Dragons: Escare; Oldfield, Pomeroy, Tonga, Duport; Carney, Dureau; Anderson, Henderson, Lima, Taia, Whitehead, Mounis.
Interchanges: Elima, Garcia, Bousquet, Baitieri.
Salford Red Devils: Locke; Johnson, Sa’u, Paterson, J Griffin; Chase, Fages; Taylor, Lee, Tasi, Hansen, Hauraki, J Walne.
Interchanges: Morley, D Griffin, A Walne, Hood.
Referee: Phil Bentham
Ready for the Rhinos!
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Ahead of tonight’s fixture against Huddersfield Giants we take a look back at the last meeting between the sides at the AJ Bell Stadium in which Salford earned their first-ever Super 8s victory.
The Red Devils ran out comfortable victors crossing for nine tries which marked their first win for almost three months and their first-ever win in the Betfred Super League play-offs/Super 8s.
Salford went into the break with a dominant 30-4 lead over the Giants. Kris Welham opened the scoring as he took advantage of some poor Huddersfield defence from Rob Lui’s kick. Mid-season arrivals Tyrone McCarthy and Manu Vatuvei furthered the hosts lead.
Welham doubled his account for the afternoon before Niall Evalds jinked his way through the Giants defence. Jermaine McGillvary did cross before the break for Huddersfield, but Ian Watson’s side remained in control.
And, their control carried over into the second half with Vatuvei and Jake Bibby both scoring in quick succession to all but confirm victory for Salford. Oliver Roberts scored for Huddersfield, but it failed to slow the Red Devils down.
Back-row duo Ben Murdoch-Masila and Josh Jones both forced their way over in the closing stages to round off a fantastic afternoon at the AJ Bell Stadium. Huddersfield’s Ryan Hinchcliffe did score the final try however it was definitely Salford that were laughing after a rampant display.
Salford Head Coach Ian Watson: “I don’t think we have been as good as that in a game-plan for some time. The boys out there have done themselves proud.
“I thought we won the energy battle. We are a team that like to play, and I thought we did some things really well.
“This has been a real tough period for us with a number of losses, but I’ve always said we’d learn things as a group because the Super 8s has been a new experience for us.
“We have just got to worry about ourselves. The table will look after itself. We have been focusing on us rather than worry about chasing a Grand Final. We will take each step as it comes.”
The teams that day:
Salford: Evalds; Bibby, Welham, Sa’u, Vatuvei; Lui, G. O’Brien; Kopczak, Tomkins, Hauraki, Murdoch-Masila, Jones, McCarthy.
Interchanges: A. Walne, Brining, Lannon, J. Walne.
Huddersfield: Rankin; McGillvary, Mellor, Turner, Ormsby; Gaskell, Brough; Ikahihifo, Leeming, Ta’ai; Roberts, Ferguson, Hinchcliffe.
Interchanges: A. O’Brien, Rapira, Lawrence, Clough.
Ahead of this weekend’s Dacia Magic Weekend crucial Betfred Super League clash with Catalans Dragons we take a look back to last year’s fixture against Leigh Centurions in this week’s ‘Flashback’.
The Red Devils travelled to Newcastle to face event debutants Leigh Centurions searching for another victory which would keep them in touching distance of Betfred Super League leaders at the time Castleford Tigers.
It was actually Leigh who took the lead when Matty Fleming – on loan from St Helens – crossed to open the Centurions’ account at the event however Ben Murdoch-Masila scored from a Michael Dobson kick on the ten-minute mark before Gareth O’Brien followed up with a penalty goal six minutes later to level the scores.
Leigh regained control when Mitch Brown went over but it was Murdoch-Masila who again returned the favour powering his way over for Salford. Kris Welham was next to score for Salford and give the Red Devils the lead for the first time in the match, O’Brien followed up with the conversion.
Greg Johnson scored his first of the afternoon with seven minutes of the first half remaining while Danny Tickle was denied by the video referee giving Ian Watson’s men a 12-point lead going into the interval.
The Centurions – in similar fashion to the first half – started the quicker thanks to a Ben Crooks try but they were soon reduced to 12 men following a poorly timed high challenge from Adam Higson on Gareth O’Brien.
Salford took advantage when Niall Evalds looked to have sealed the victory for the Red Devils but a Matty Dawson score did give Leigh a glimmer of hope. But, a second try from winger Johnson with fifteen minutes remaining did round off a solid 22-36 victory for Salford which moved them into 2nd in the Betfred Super League.
Salford Red Devils Head Coach, Ian Watson, said: “Every week is a big one, but it’s pleasing to come here to the Magic Weekend and pick the two points up because it’s a big occasion.
“It’s a derby and we expected Leigh to turn up. We fell off some of the things we pride ourselves on, which probably made the score in the second half slightly closer than it needed to be.
“But the boys are an honest group and they will know that, and they will fix it up because every game is becoming bigger and bigger the higher we sit in the table.”
The teams that day:
Salford: O’Brien; Johnson, Welham, Sa’u, Evalds; Lui, Dobson; Kopczak, Tomkins, Tasi, Murdoch-Masila, Jones, Krasniqi.
Interchanges: Hauraki, Flanagan, Lannon, Brining.
Leigh: Brown; Dawson, Crooks, Fleming, Higson; Hampshire, Drinkwater; Burr, Hood, Hansen, Paterson, Vea, Stewart.
Interchanges: Pelissier, Hock, Tickle, Hopkins.
Ahead of tomorrow’s Betfred Super League Round 12 clash with Wakefield Trinity we take a look back to a memorable victory for the Red Devils over this weekend’s opponents back in 2014.
The game saw the newly-named Salford Red Devils start their 2014 season off with a narrow victory in front of a record crowd at the AJ Bell Stadium following Dr Marwan Koukash bringing in 14 new arrivals in the off-season.
Kick-off was delayed by ten minutes to allow all the fans to enter the AJ Bell stadium and it was the Red Devils who made the better start.
Gareth Hock opened the scoring for Salford as he was the quickest to react to Greg Johnson’s flick back. Fellow forwards Harrison Hansen and Andrew Dixon both also found themselves on the scoresheet to help the hosts race into an 18-0 lead.
However, tries for Trinity debutants Matty Ryan and Pita Godinet began a Wakefield fightback and when Ali Lauiti’iti went over Salford began to get nervous. But, in the end, it was Jake Mullaney’s three successful conversions compared to Paul Sykes solitary goal that were the difference between the sides.
Salford Red Devils Head Coach Brian Noble said: “I was biting my fingernails. I thought Wakefield were great in the second half and we didn’t have any ball. I was nervous.
“It’s a great lesson for us. I am absolutely delighted with the win and delighted with the win and delighted with the day and the crowd.
“To have the game delayed getting people in the place was fabulous.”
The teams that day:
Salford: Mullaney; Johnson, Walton, Sa’u, Meli; Chase, Smith; Morley, Lee, Tasi; Hansen, Hock, Puletua.
Interchanges: D. Griffin, Dixon, McPherson, Howarth.
Wakefield: Mathers; Fox, Collis, Keinhorst, Lyne; Sykes, Godinet; Anderson, McShane, Smith, Lauiti’iti, Kirkmond, Washbrook.
Interchanges: Raleigh, Ryan, Tautai, Walshaw.
Ahead of tomorrow’s game at St Helens we take a look down memory lane to a previous Betfred Super League fixture at the Totally Wicked Stadium with stark similarities to this weekend’s.
Alan Hunte’s Salford travelled to St Helens in round eight of the 2013 Super League season and despite the game taking place in late March the pitch was covered in snow.
The conditions made it a difficult affair for both sides with the hosts going into the interval just 6-0 ahead thanks to an Ade Gardner try and a penalty goal from debutant Lewis Charnock.
But, it was St Helens who continued to control the game in the second-half as Francis Meli crossed following a break from now Red Devil Josh Jones. This was alongside two more goals from Charnock to seemingly put the game out of the reach of the Red Devils.
However, Salford almost clawed back a result as Jordan James put half-back Liam Foran through a gap to score before Marc Sneyd made it two quick fire tries for the visitors. A successful conversion narrowed the arrears further but Salford’s winless away run continued.
Salford Interim Head Coach Alan Hunte said: “We were down to the bare bones at the end, but the performance was very pleasing I thought we deserved something.
“Both sides rolled up their sleeves in the conditions and there was little between the teams. They had that little bit of quality to get over the line.
“In the first 10 or 15 minutes of the second half we needed to put pressure on but did not manage to do that and that gave Saints confidence, but I could not ask any more of our guys.”
The teams that day:
St Helens: Wellens; Gardner, Turner, Jones, Meli; Charnock, Wilkin; Perry, Ashe, Puletua, Manu, McCarthy-Scarsbrook, Flanagan. Interchanges: Soliola, Clough, Walmsley, Speakman.
Salford: Sneyd; D. Williams, Gleeson, Gibson, Broughton; Fages, Foran; Griffin, Godwin, Neal, Ashurst, Dixon, Wild. Interchanges: Howarth, Nero, Boyle, James.
In this week’s Flashback piece we take a look back to the last meeting between Salford Red Devils and Hull Kingston Rovers as Ian Watson’s men progressed to the quarter-finals of the 2017 Ladbrokes Challenge Cup.
Despite the visitors racing into a 14-0 lead Salford managed to fightback scoring 24 unanswered points at the AJ Bell Stadium to move on to the last eight of the competition.
Hooker Shaun Lunt crossed for two tries in quick succession alongside two conversions plus a penalty goal from Jamie Ellis opened up an early lead for the Robins.
However, Salford soon hit back as Ryan Lannon narrowed the gap just prior to the interval as he latched onto a clever kick from Michael Dobson.
And it was the Red Devils who came back out on the front foot as – in similar fashion to KR in the first half – they grabbed two tries in a short period.
Prop-forward Craig Kopczak powered his way over before Kriss Brining managed to edge the hosts ahead for the first time in the game.
Ben Murdoch-Masila crashed over for Salford’s fourth of the evening to pull victory even closer which was furthered by Michael Dobson retaining his 100% record with the boot.
Salford Red Devils Head Coach, Ian Watson, said: “At half-time, we just spoke honestly as a group.
“We knew the standards they were reaching in the first half didn’t measure up to what we expect. We allowed Hull KR to dictate the speed of the game.
“We also spoke about us being soft in defence. They were dominating the ruck and getting up too quickly. We had to stop that and fortunately for us we did.”
Ahead of our 2018 Betfred Super League opener against Wigan tomorrow night we take a look back at a memorable victory for Salford over the Warriors back in March 2006.
The victory continued a fantastic start to the 2006 season for the Red Devils who climbed to 2nd in the Super League following an impressive 28-10 over Wigan.
It took just nine minutes for Salford to open the scoring when Luke Robinson’s hanging kick was taken well by Simon Finnegan. David Hodgson successfully converted before adding a penalty goal to further Salford’s early lead.
But, Wigan soon closed the gap as Danny Orr spun a long pass out to Pat Richards who crossed for Wigan.
The Warriors continued to apply pressure to the Reds line, but Salford held out before Andrew Coley crashed over in the closing stages of the first half. Hodgson’s conversion opened up a 10-point lead going into the interval.
Wigan again replied after the break when some quick hands involving Harrison Hansen and Richards allowed Orr to go over in the corner. Danny Tickle converted.
Again, Salford soaked up all the pressure from the visitors and managed to extend the arrears again as John Wilshere burrowed his way over in the corner.
Wilshere turned provider as he jinked through on the last tackle and kicked to Andrew Dunneman who finished well. Hodgson then scored in the final moments from 40 yards to cap off a wonderful night at The Willows.
Salford Head Coach Karl Harrison: “After last week’s performance against Bradford we spoke all week about getting a result in the game.
“We made it difficult for Wigan and I thought we defended manfully. At one stage in the second half we defended six successive sets, which was excellent.”
The teams that day:
Salford: Fitzpatrick, Hodgson, Littler, Moule, Wilshere; Dunemann, Robinson; Baldwin, Alker, Highton, Coley, Brocklehurst, Finnigan.
Interchanges: Clough, Haggerty, Rutgerson, Langi.
Wigan: Ashton, Dallas, Richards, Vaealiki, Calderwood; Orr, Moran; Seuseu, Godwin, Logan, Tickle, Hansen, Brown.
Interchanges: Palea’aesina, Hargreaves, J. Tomkins, Higham.
While the Red Devils earned a memorable victory against Warrington away last season we’re going back to 2011 for this week’s flashback.
Salford headed into their clash with then Super League leaders Warrington with a torrid record against the Wolves having racked up five derby defeats on the bounce – with the last being a 60-0 drubbing at The Willows – but that was to come to an end at the Halliwell Jones Stadium.
It was the Wire who were first to cross as centre Chris Bridge latched onto a kick by former Red Devil Richie Myler to score in the corner.
However, Salford soon took the lead as some quick hands from the halves allowed Sean Gleeson to bust the Warrington line and force his way over. Daniel Holdsworth converted to open up a narrow lead.
But, the back-and-forth nature of the game continued when Lee Briers dummied and sliced through a big gap in the Salford defence.
Salford turned on the style going forward following the interval scoring two tries inside four minutes. Luke Patten raced 30m to score on the backend of a Gleeson pass before Holdsworth and Patten combined to give Mark Henry an easy finish in the corner. Holdsworth’s conversion made the scores 18-10.
Warrington were chasing the game and mounting the pressure on the Salford line and Myler managed to sneak over with two minutes remaining. The conversion closed the arrears to two points but Salford held out and came away with two points.
The victory made it back-to-back wins for Salford after they overcame Wakefield a week earlier and new Coach Matt Parish was set to arrive following the victory.
The teams that day:
Warrington: Brett Hodgson, Chris Bridge, Matty Blythe, Ryan Atkins, Rhys Williams; Lee Briers, Richie Myler, Adrian Morley, Michael Monaghan, Garreth Carvell, David Solomona, Ben Westwood, Simon Grix.
Interchanges: Micky Higham, Paul Wood, Mike Cooper, Tyrone McCarthy.
Salford: Luke Patten, Mark Henry, Sean Gleeson, Stefan Ratchford, Jodie Broughton; Matty Smith, Daniel Holdsworth; Ray Cashmere, Wayne Godwin, Ryan Boyle, Luke Adamson, Chris Nero, Vinnie Anderson.
Interchanges: Lee Jewitt, Iafeta Palea’aesina, Adam Sidlow, Adam Neal.
The last time Salford hosted Swinton was back in 2015 as the local community joined to celebrate the life of aid worker Alan Henning with a ninety second applause from players and fans taking place before the game as well as Alan Henning’s family receiving gifts from the respective captains.
On the field, it turned out to be an extremely comfortable day at the office for the Red Devils who ran out 66-4 winners after naming a very strong side.
Salford set their stall out early as Gareth Hock latched onto a low kick after just four minutes. Full-back Kevin Locke and half-back Rangi Chase both crossed in quick succession before Hock went over for his second and Salford’s fourth inside the opening twenty minutes.
Iestyn Harris’ sides dominance continued into the latter stages of the first half with Niall Evalds diving over in the corner before Locke and Chase both notched their doubles either side of Jon Ford’s effort. Salford went into the break 42-0 ahead after a dominant display in the first half.
Swinton improved following the interval but it was Chase who was first to cross in the second-half furthering the Red Devils lead. However, the Lions did get themselves on the scoresheet through Shaun Robinson latched onto a Chris Atkin kick fifteen minutes from time.
But, it was the hosts who finished the stronger with Theo Fages going over before Chase racked up his fourth try of the game in the closing stages. Tony Puletua rounded the scoring off in the final minute to seal a big win for Salford.
Salford Red Devils Coach Iestyn Harris said following the game: “I’m very happy with the run out and to give some players quality time on the pitch and will do the same again next week as we get nearer to the Super League start. It was a very good day and was happy with most of the aspects of the game but not too happy about allowing them to score.”
The teams that day:
Salford: Kevin Locke, Niall Evalds, Josh Griffin, Jason Walton, Jon Ford; Rangi Chase, Theo Fages; Scott Taylor, Tommy Lee, Lama Tasi, Harrison Hansen, Cory Paterson, Gareth Hock.
Interchanges: Adrian Morley, Darrell Griffin, Tony Puletua, George Griffin, Matty Gee, Jordan Walne, Adam Walne, Liam Hood, Brad England.
Swinton: Richie Hawkyard, Shaun Robinson, Stuart Littler, Andy Ball, Alex Hurst; Jimmy Rowland, Ben White; Mike Morrison, Lewis Hulme, Tommy Gallagher, Darren Hawkyard, Grant Beecham, Connor Dwyer.
Interchanges: Aaron Lloyd, Jack Morrison, Liam Coleman, Chris Rothwell, Chris Atkin, Mick Nanyn, Harry Aaronson, Dale Cunniffe.
Fans can purchase tickets for tomorrow’s game against Swinton from the Club Ticket Office or over the phone on 0161 786 1570. The Ticket Office will be open prior to the game but remember our ‘2018 Season Launch’ begins at 10:30am in the 1873 suite. The match kicks off at 1pm.