Salford Red Devils fell to their first defeat of the 2019 Betfred Super League season against Leeds Rhinos and we take a look at the talking points surrounding the game.
While the scoreline got away from the Red Devils in the end there were a few times Salford went close while the margin was much narrower. At 6-18, Jansin Turgut got himself over the line following a clever knockdown from Kris Welham however try was ruled out for a double-movement.
In the closing stages of the first half, Rob Lui broke from deep before finding Jackson Hastings who almost made the line. The ball would end up with Joey Lussick, but the support wasn’t there to finish off the move. George Griffin would then be held up just short of the line a few plays later.
???? @JoeyLussick opened the scoring this afternoon.
— Salford Red Devils (@SalfordDevils) February 17, 2019
After Josh Jones narrowed the deficit early in the second half, Salford almost pulled the scores level as Junior Sa’u powered his way over three Leeds defenders. Unfortunately, the centre couldn’t quite keep hold off the ball. Had any of these opportunities gone the other way then the game could have well panned out differently.
Jansin Turgut’s sin-bin
A big moment in the game came on the 50-minute mark as second-rower Jansin Turgut was sent to the sin-bin following an altercation with Adam Cuthbertson at the play-the-ball. Turgut was sin-binned for running into the melee and escalating the situation.
Following the sin-bin, the Red Devils kept the scores close with Ken Sio’s penalty goal returning the arrears to six points after Tui Lolohea’s penalty goal following the incident. However, playing with twelve men may well have had an effect on the Red Devils in the latter stages but Head Coach Ian Watson made it clear this ‘wasn’t why they’d lost the game.’
Head Coach Ian Watson said: “Even for the next ten minutes following the sin-bin I thought we got ourselves back into the game and we were looking really strong but after that Leeds really picked up the speed of the game and took it away from us from there. It was a big call, but it isn’t why we’ve lost.”
Josh Jones continues to impress
One of the standout performers on a disappointing afternoon for Salford Red Devils was back-rower Josh Jones who has made a terrific start to the 2019 Betfred Super League season.
Jones was impactful at the John Smith’s Stadium in Round One and has now made try-scoring appearances at the AJ Bell Stadium against both London Broncos and Leeds Rhinos. Both of his tries came in similar fashion with the robust forward forcing his way over from close-range despite the best efforts of numerous defenders.
The 25-year-old has made massive metres already this season often taking on three and four defenders per carry and his offload game continues to cause a threat on a regular basis.
Away from the field there was plenty of gameday activity and entertainment for supporters to soak up at the AJ Bell Stadium. Many supporters took advantage of the FREE entry to the Funderpark amusement park pre-game before packing out the Marquee.
The Salford Red Devils mobile Club Shop provided by WildThang was alongside stalls from the Salford Red Devils Foundation, Mascord Brownz and the Salford RLFC Supporters’ Trust all accompanied by music by a ten-piece band.
— Salford Red Devils (@SalfordDevils) February 18, 2019
At half-time local boxer Marc Leach and his trainer Jamie Moore took to the field to promote his upcoming English title fight in March in Oldham. Aaron Parmar also did a lap of the AJ Bell Stadium pitch after bucket collecting to support his incredible efforts in running 22 10km runs in memory of the 22 victims of the Manchester terror attack.
Finally, Dr Devil was joined by Manchester Storm mascot Lightning Jack!
Tickets are on sale for Salford Red Devils next home fixture against St Helens on Thursday 28th February. You can purchase tickets for this game at the AJ Bell Stadium Ticket Office, over the phone on 0161 786 1570 or online HERE. You will save money buying in advance!