Tag: josh jones

Three talking points | Salford Red Devils 32-16 Catalans Dragons

Following yesterday’s impressive 32-16 victory over Catalans Dragons in the opening fixture of the Easter weekend we take a look at three talking points from the game.
Physicality
There will be some sore bodies this morning after that bruising encounter with the Catalans Dragons.
Yesterday afternoon’s game saw both sets of forwards really throw themselves about with the likes of Luke Burgess, Lee Mossop and Craig Kopczak standing strong in the middle.
Club Captain Weller Hauraki and Lama Tasi put on a show reel of big hits while Ben Nakubuwai continued to impress following his move to the AJ Bell Stadium. The game did get heated in spells, but Salford managed this better and came out on top.
Salford’s threat from deep
The Red Devils crossed for five tries and there were some very stylish and impressive scores from Ian Watson’s men.
Greg Johnson’s try saw a line break from Mark Flanagan who find fellow forward Ben Nakubuwai, the move would continue through the hands of half-back duo Josh Wood and Rob Lui before Johnson rounded off a fantastic try.
This ability to break from the middle of the field was on display again for Josh Jones’ first try of the season when Flanagan again found a gap before Lui and Niall Evalds linked up to put the second-rower over.
Home and Good Friday fortunes
Salford’s impressive run of form in Good Friday fixtures continued with five wins from their last six outings in the opening fixture of the Easter weekend.
Yesterday’s victory also saw the Red Devils extend their run of home victories in 2018 to three on the bounce with wins over Hull KR, Hull FC and now the Catalans Dragons.
The Red Devils will be hoping the AJ Bell Stadium continues to be a fortress in the coming weeks starting with Warrington Wolves next Saturday, 3:15pm kick-off.

Match Report | Salford Red Devils 32-16 Catalans Dragons

Salford Red Devils returned to winning ways in emphatic fashion after cruising to a crucial 32-16 victory over Catalans Dragons in a feisty Betfred Super League encounter at the AJ Bell Stadium on Good Friday.
Tries from Jake Bibby, Niall Evalds, Greg Johnson, Josh Jones and Kris Welham along with six goals from Robert Lui ensured The Red Devils bounced back from their defeat at Widnes to earn a crucial two points in what was a clinical display.
After the disappointment of last Thursday’s loss to the Vikings, it was clear from the off that Salford were intent on immediately bouncing back to make a statement versus the Dragons this time around.
Salford opened the scoring in the 8th minute when Robert Lui’s fizzing pass allowed Niall Evalds to break through the Catalans backline before cooly finding Jake Bibby who produced an emphatic finish in the right-hand corner, Lui added the extras to give Salford a six point lead.
Evalds soon turned from provider to scorer – Lee Mossop found Lui who broke clear of the Catalans line before playing the ball to the onrushing Evalds who had the simple task of crossing over, Lui again kicked the resulting goal.
Salford were temporarily reduced to twelve men as Weller Hauraki was sent to the sin-bin midway through the half for a dangerous tackle, however The Red Devils immediately forced a Catalans error as Lama Tasi powered through an opponent which ultimately resulted in a knock-on.
However, the visitors responded well and clawed their way back into the contest when Tony Gigot spotted a huge gap behind the Salford line and produced a looping kick which enabled Fouad Yaha to touch down in the corner, but Gigot was unable to land the subsequent conversion.
The first score of the second period arrived in the 51st minute when Greg Johnson finished off a free-flowing move after a good break by Mark Flanagan, followed by some quick hands from Ben Nakubuwai, Josh Wood and Lui –  half-back Lui then kicked the resulting to extend Salford’s lead to fourteen points.
Salford were almost over again minutes later when Lui bypassed several tackle attempts before sprinting 30m and offloading to the onrushing Evalds who quickly found Wood, but the half-back was stopped in his tracks just when a try looked a certainty.
Despite a good spell of pressure from the hosts, Catalans fought back yet again and claimed arguably the best try of the tie when Yaha intercepted Logan Tomkins’ cross-field pass before racing 90m to cross over for his second, Gigot then added the extras to reduce the deficit to eight points.
The Red Devils extended their lead by a further two points through a penalty, Lui opted to kick at goal and successfully converted to take Salford up to the twenty point mark.
Lui’s penalty appeared to spur Salford on, Evalds deceived the Dragons backline with an excellent step before some slick passing from Lui and Flanagan allowed Josh Jones to dive over under the sticks and claim his first try of the season – Lui converted the resulting goal.
Unfortunately for the visitors, Salford weren’t finished there – this time Kris Welham fought off the defensive efforts of three Catalans defenders before powering over the line, Lui added the extras in what was an excellent conversion attempt.
Despite being second best for the majority of the fixture, Catalans produced a valiant effort and claimed a late consolation when Greg Bird dived over from close range late on, Gigot added the extras but Ian Watson’s men hung on to claim a crucial two points.
Salford Lineup: Evalds, Johnson, Sa’u, Welham, Bibby, Lui, Wood, Mossop, Tomkins, Kopczak, Jones, Hauraki, Flanagan
Interchanges: Littlejohn, Nakubuwai, Tasi, Burgess
Catalans Lineup: Tierney, Broughton, Mead, Williame, Yaha , Gigot, Langi, Casty, McIlorum, Moa, Bird, Garcia, Baitieri
Interchanges: Aiton, Bousquet, Simon, Jullien
Salford Scorers: Tries- Bibby (8’), Evalds (10’), Johnson (51’), Jones (68’), Welham (73’)
Goals- Lui (9’, 11’, 52’, 66’, 69’, 74’)
Catalans Scorers: Tries- Yaha (26’, 59), Bird (78’)
Goals- Gigot (60’, 79’)
Man of the Match: Josh Wood
Referee: Gareth Hewer
Touch Judges: G. Jones & A. Smith
Attendance: 2,328 

Flashback | Salford Red Devils 50-12 Catalans Dragons | Friday 26th May

Ahead of tomorrow’s Good Friday clash with Catalans Dragons we take a look at the last time the French visited the AJ Bell Stadium in May of 2017. 
The occasion was an emotional one with free entry being given to supporters provided they gave a donation to the Manchester Arena fund following the tragic Arena bombing in the week preceding the fixture.
And, the Red Devils rose to the occasion with a dominant 50-12 win over their French counterparts in front of 4287 strong at the AJ Bell Stadium which meant the Red Devils kept pressure on Castleford Tigers atop the Betfred Super League.
The visitors got off to a poor start with Remy Casty being sin-binned for a late challenge on Gareth O’Brien and It took just a minute for the Red Devils to take the lead with O’Brien being the man to take advantage. This was soon followed by a score from Josh Jones.
In the 22nd minute the fans broke into a round of applause to remember the 22 victims of the Manchester Arena bombing and fittingly the Red Devils crossed, and it was number 22 Kris Welham who went over the line.
Salford continued to assert their dominance in the first half with Niall Evalds and Ryan Lannon both finding their ways to the line. The Red Devils control carried over in the second forty as Kriss Brining burrowed his way over before Catalans got themselves off the mark thanks to Vincent Duport.
But, any hopes of a comeback were almost immediately quashed with a try of the year candidate from Robert Lui. The Salford half-back took a loose pass from the Dragons on his own 10m line before racing ninety metres and fending off Tony Gigot in the process.
Back-to-back tries from forwards Olsi Krasniqi and Mark Flanagan followed alongside seven goals from nine attempts by Michael Dobson to round off a convincing victory. Fouad Yaha scored a late consolation for the Dragons.
Salford Red Devils Head Coach Ian Watson said: “It was a great performance. We spoke this week about being a better team and improving from what we’ve done.
“We always felt if we did our job in the middle we could get them on the edge.
‘It was important for us to put on a performance like that, and put on a show, with everything that has gone on to support everything.
“People talk about it [the Manchester attack] and people discuss it but the big thing for us was we had to focus on our performance.”
The teams that day
Salford: O’Brien; Johnson, Jones, Welham, Evalds; Lui, Dobson; Tasi, Tomkins, Hasson, Murdoch-Masila, Hauraki, Krasniqi.
Interchanges: Flanagan, Lannon, Kopczak, Brining.
Catalans: Gigot; Thornley, Inu, Wiliame, Yaha; Walsh, Myler; Moa, Da Costa, Simon, Bousquet, Casty, Dezaria.
Interchanges: Doport, Albert, Seguier, Perez.
 
Remember, we want YOU to bring YOUR mate to tomorrow’s game against Catalans Dragons and get them to purchase on gameday!
Dr Marwan Koukash will then match your purchase and you can enter the draw to win your 2019 Season Ticket for FREE!

Factfile | Castleford Tigers vs Salford Red Devils | Sunday 11th March

Ahead of Sunday’s Betfred Super League clash with Castleford Tigers at the Mend-A-Hose Jungle we take a look at the facts behind the fixture. 
Head-to-head 
Salford and Castleford have had a real share of the spoils over the last two seasons with The Red Devils coming away with three wins from six and The Tigers claiming the other three victories.
Ian Watson’s side were the first team to overcome Castleford in the 2017 Betfred Super League thanks to a late Gareth O’Brien drop-goal in March at the AJ Bell Stadium. However, the Red Devils lost back-to-back games against Castleford in the latter stages of last season.
Salford’s last victory at the Mend-A-Hose Jungle came back in 2016 as the Red Devils ran out convincing 32-16 winners – this was the Club’s first win at Castleford since 2004. Salford’s best run of results against Castleford in the Betfred Super League era came in 2004 when they won three consecutive games against the West Yorkshire side.
Try-Scoring
Salford and Castleford over the years has had some high-scoring affairs with seven of the last eight games having a combined score of 27 or more points.
This has allowed for some fairly frequent try-scoring which has seen at least one player grab at least a brace in each of the last eight meetings, also. Zak Hardaker, Greg Eden and Joel Monaghan all scored doubles for Castleford in this fixture last season while Ben Murdoch-Masila crossed twice in a 13-12 victory.
Junior Sa’u, Josh Griffin and Kevin Locke have all notched braces for Salford in the fixture since 2015 while Jake Webster, Denny Solomona and Ashley Gibson have all scored doubles for The Tigers. Solomona scored a brace twice in the fixture in this period. Justin Carney is the only man to score a brace for both Salford and Castleford in this time.
The fixture is also one for the backs with the forwards scoring just three of the last 24 tries in this fixture. Murdoch-Masila scored two of these while Paul McShane crossed for Castleford. There was a total of 13 different try-scorers in this fixture last season.
Milestones
Salford Red Devils back-rower Josh Jones is set to make his 150th Betfred Super League appearance if selected for Sunday’s game. Jones featured in the Betfred Super League on 97 occasions for St Helens and has now made 52 Betfred Super League appearances for Salford.
Castleford winger Greg Minikin could make his 100th career appearance this weekend. Minikin has played 49 games for The Tigers alongside seven dual-registration appearances for Batley whilst at Castleford. Minikin signed from York for whom he featured 43 times.

Factfile | St Helens vs Salford Red Devils | Sunday 4th March

Ahead of Sunday’s Betfred Super League clash with St Helens at the Totally Wicked Stadium we take a look at the facts behind this fixture.
Head-to-head
Saints are somewhat of a bogey team for Salford however the Red Devils have begun to curve that in recent seasons with two wins against St Helens in their last five meetings with the six-time Betfred Super League winners.
Both of these victories came at the AJ Bell Stadium with a comfortable 44-10 win in 2016 followed by a 22-14 victory in round eight of the 2017 Betfred Super League season.
However, it’s on the road where the difficulties lie for Salford as they are without a win at St Helens since 1980. The closest the Red Devils have come to edging out Saints at St Helens came last season when a last-minute drop-goal from former Red Devil Matty Smith sealed a win for Justin Holbrook’s side.
Overall in the Super League era, Salford have won six times against St Helens while the hosts have won 36 times against the Red Devils. There is yet to be a draw between the two sides in the Betfred Super League.
Try-scoring
Last weekend Niall Evalds crossed twice in a convincing 36-12 victory over Hull Kingston Rovers at the AJ Bell Stadium and in the process became the first-ever Salford player to score in each of the opening games of a Betfred Super League season.
Evalds also enjoys playing at the Totally Wicked Stadium as the versatile back scored twice in the narrow 25-24 loss at St Helens last season. In fact, Evalds has scored in his last four competitive outings including a try in the final game of the 2017 season which came against St Helens.
As for Saints – they also have a regular threat against Salford. Prop-forward Alex Walmsley has scored three tries in his last three appearances against Salford including a brace in last season’s Super 8’s clash between the sides in late September.
Played for both
There are a host of former St Helens players in Ian Watson’s 19-man squad for this weekend. Prop-forward Lama Tasi spent time at the Totally Wicked Stadium between his two stints with the Red Devils while Josh Jones and Mark Flanagan were both part of St Helens’ 2014 Betfred Super League Grand Final winning team.
Gareth O’Brien also earned seven appearances with the Saints on loan from Warrington Wolves.
St Helens half-back duo Matty Smith and Theo Fages both enjoyed spells at the AJ Bell Stadium. Smith’s original stint in 2010 was on loan from St Helens before joining the Red Devils on a permanent basis. Fages came through the ranks at Salford and went on to make over 65 appearances for Salford before signing St Helens in 2016.

Ian Watson | “We knew Josh was going to be a good player”

Salford Red Devils Head Coach Ian Watson has been impressed with his squad over the past few weeks in particular young hooker Josh Wood who featured in the 36-12 victory over Hull Kingston Rovers.
Watson said: “We knew Josh was going to be a good player.
“The tricky thing for Josh was he’d had a couple of injuries years with his shoulder so it was about last year more nurturing him through and if then we got through to this year we could have a real good crack at it and he’s standing up really well at the moment.
Watson went on to praise Man of the Match Junior Sa’u, his forward pack and even Mark Flanagan who missed the game but was named in the 19-man squad.
Watson said: “Junior’s great he’s really on fire at the moment with his performances but everyone stepped up to be fair.
“Like I said our middles obviously you include your back-rowers in that Weller [Hauraki] and Jonesy [Josh Jones] as well.
“He’s [Mark Flanagan] fully fit we just decided to continue as we had with the big lads. He was ill for the Wigan game but that’s probably been somebody’s opportunity where they’ve come in and played really well and at the moment he’s just got to bide his time like everyone else.
“Flash is a professional he just knows that people are playing well at the moment but it’s tough to leave Flash out because he’s a great guy and a great player.
“Last year he was probably our go-to man in asking him to lead things so it is tough leaving him out of the team at the moment but he’s had no heirs or graces about it and he’s been really good in the changing rooms and training really well he’s been a good pro to be fair.
The Red Devils boss also went on to talk about the injured Kriss Brining and trialist Gene Orsmby who has been training with the Club.
Watson said: “It’s quite slow to be fair. He’s [Kriss Brining] going to see a specialist and he’s going to have to go back and see him again and see whether he needs to have surgery – he’s got a disc bulge.
“Gene’s [Ormsby] been training with us now and he’s been first class to be fair since he came in his attitude has been really good.
“We just wanted to have a little look at Gene because we are short in the outside backs.
“Gene had been released by Huddersfield and I’d known Gene from Warrington and obviously Gareth O’Brien and Tyrone [McCarthy] know him as well and there were a couple of players who gave him really big raps to be fair at Huddersfield about how he’s really knuckled down.
“We’ll see how the trial goes at first.”

Three talking points – Salford Red Devils 12-40 Wigan Warriors

Following defeat in our opening Betfred Super League game of the season we take a look at three talking points from the game.

Josh Wood’s performance 

Hookers Logan Tomkins and Kriss Brining both missed out on Friday night’s game through injuries however youngster Josh Wood stepped up to the plate and was brilliant at acting half-back.
The Wigan-born hooker made just his 15th first team appearance for Salford and put in a very solid performance with his distribution being almost perfect while he offered even more steel in the defence of the forward pack.
While Tomkins is expected to be back sooner rather than later The Red Devils will certainly be okay at acting half-back with Wood performing as he did in Friday evening’s game.

The forward battle 

Heading into Friday’s game Head Coach Ian Watson eluded to the physicality and in-your-face attitude the Wigan Warriors head into games with and knew it would be a tough battle in the middles.
However, the Salford Red Devils forwards stood up well against The Warriors with Captain Lee Mossop getting through some hard yards against his former team, Club Captain Weller Hauraki worked tirelessly as always, and Tyrone McCarthy and Josh Jones looked dangerous in the back-row.
Of course, key forward Mark Flanagan had to pull out prior to kick-off due to a virus and the pack will no doubt be even stronger when The Red Devils see the return of Flash.

The East Stand

Friday’s game against Wigan saw the East Stand of the AJ Bell Stadium house Salford supporters who have taken part in our new community and charity scheme.
A handful of local charities, schools and clubs were present for our opening Betfred Super League game of the season and, despite the result, enjoyed the match.
Salford Red Devils Director Andrew Rosler tweeted: “If the East Stand isn’t too busy tonight don’t despair or mock, it’s the first time we’ve tried this initiative. As the season progresses the initiative will grow as will our investment and bond within the Community.”
Remember, if you know, or are involved with, a charity, club or community group and would like to get involved contact the club directly or email communitytickets@salfordreddevils.net.

Three talking points – Warrington Wolves 18-6 Salford Red Devils

After suffering a 18-6 defeat at the hands of Warrington in our second pre-season friendly of 2018 we take a look at three talking points from the game.

  1. The battle in the halves

There is a real fight underway for the half-back shirts at Salford with Rob Lui, Gareth O’Brien and Jack Littlejohn all having put good cases forward to start the first game of the Betfred Super League season against Wigan in less than two weeks time.
Lui and O’Brien started in the halves against Warrington yesterday with Lui grabbing the Red Devils sole try. O’Brien has adapted well to his way into the halves after a few years at full-back while Littlejohn entered the fray in the second half and was a constant threat.
O’Brien eluded to the competition for places in his pre-Warrington interview and this can already be seen in the push for a half-back spot. This can only be good for the Red Devils attack in 2018. 

  1. Josh Jones’ performance

One standout performer for Ian Watson’s side at the Halliwell Jones Stadium yesterday was second-row Josh Jones.
Jones was tasked with keeping Ben Murdoch-Masila quiet throughout the game and he man did an excellent job matching the former Salford man physically even forcing him to knock-on.
The former St Helens man was also dangerous going forward with his offload game opening a few opportunities for Salford. Last year Jones switched between the centres and back-row but if he continues to play like he did yesterday there is no doubt he’ll cement a permanent spot in the second-row.

  1. Former Salford men

Despite Jones keeping Murdoch-Masila quiet for the majority of the game it was two former Red Devils who unlocked the Salford defence and helped Wire to victory.
The Tongan forward managed to get a hand free in the closing stages of the first half and offload to Joe Philbin to level the scores going into the interval.
In the opening stages of the second half it was another former Red Devil in Stefan Ratchford who managed to reach out and plant the ball down to give Warrington a lead which they didn’t surrender despite Salford’s best efforts.
 

2017 Review: Josh Jones

Our second Red Devil to have their 2017 reviewed is Josh Jones a player who has performed in both the backs and forwards this season.
Jones spent much of the season in the second-row however injuries and positional changes meant the 24-year-old moved into the centre on occasion – a position he is accustomed to from his time with fellow Super League side St Helens.
The former Exeter Chiefs man didn’t take long to open his try-scoring account in 2017 with a brilliant solo effort against Huddersfield Giants in the Red Devils first away game of the season which won Salford the game. Jones managed to barge Giants forward Sam Rapira off not once but twice before dragging Kruise Leeming, Lee Gaskell and Sebastine Ikahihifo over the line.
While Jones only managed to cross three times last season – against Huddersfield away in the Super League and at home in the 8s against the Giants as well as at home to Catalans – his attacking threat isn’t to be understated. Jones was the Red Devils second highest metre-maker from the pack last season and was heads and shoulders above the rest of the squad in terms of offloads with 41 in Super League; 11 more than any other Salford player.
The versatile Red Devil will be heading into his third season with Salford in 2018 and will be looking to continue his impressive performances whether that be in the back-row or at centre.
Josh Jones was sponsored by Oakwood Engineering throughout the 2017 season.
Josh Jones’ 2017 stats (All competitions)
Appearances: 27
Tries: 3
Points: 12
Fact: Josh Jones executed the most offloads of any Red Devil in 2017 and was the 11th most frequent in the Super League.
Josh Jones’ 2017 in pictures 

Factfile – Salford Red Devils vs St Helens

Ahead of our final game of the 2017 season here are all the facts before we host St Helens tomorrow night.
Head-to-head
The Red Devils failed to win a game against St Helens between June 2010 and June 2015 – a run of 11 games however Salford have managed to overcome Saints twice in their last four meetings.
Both of the Red Devils victories since 2016 have come at the AJ Bell Stadium with Ian Watson’s men earning a convincing 44-10 victory last season before edging out Saints 22-14 in March, also.
In nine games between September 2011 and June 2015 Salford scored a combined total of just 76 points against St Helens but have since managed to rack up a combined total of 110 points in their last four meetings; scoring 20 or more in each.
Against their former club
There are three Red Devils who have enjoyed stints with St Helens – Mark Flanagan, Josh Jones and Gareth O’Brien.
Flanagan, who is still sidelined, featured for Saints between 2012 and 2015 and played in their 2014 Super League Grand Final triumph. Jones was also on the field for St Helens’ 14-6 victory over Wigan and played almost 100 games for this week’s opponents before switching codes.
O’Brien spent a short spell on loan in 2013 from Warrington and kicked 25 goals in seven appearances for the Merseyside team.
Saints have two former Red Devils and both come in the halves. French half-back Theo Fages made the move to the Totally Wicked Stadium in 2016 from Salford while Matty Smith moved to the AJ Bell Stadium from Saints, following a loan spell, in 2011 and now finds himself back with St Helens after a four-year stint with Wigan Warriors.
Try-scorers
If there’s one Red Devil who enjoys playing against St Helens its full-back Niall Evalds who has notched an impressive seven tries in his last four appearances against them.
Evalds crossed for two in the 25-24 defeat at the Totally Wicked Stadium as well as scoring a hat-trick in the visit to St Helens last season. The last time Saints visited the AJ Bell Evalds was also on the scoresheet grabbing a brace.
However, Saints have their own full-back come half-back who enjoys coming up against the Red Devils in Jonny Lomax. Lomax, who has scored three in his last two outings, has also scored in each of his last three appearances against Salford.
 
Tickets are on sale for our final home game of the season against St Helens and can be purchased over the phone, at the Club Ticket Office or online here. Fans can also watch our end of season awards for an extra £5 in the 1873 suite post-game. Season Tickets are valid for all Super 8s home games.