Tag: Niall Evalds

Talking Points | Huddersfield Giants 14-34 Salford Red Devils

Salford Red Devils opened their 2019 Betfred Super League season with an impressive victory over Huddersfield Giants at the John Smith’s Stadium and there were plenty of talking points from the game.

Dangerous left-hand side

The Red Devils ran in seven tries in their 14-34 victory with five coming down the left-hand side. Two of Niall Evalds’ three tries were down the left-hand flank while Junior Sa’u opened the scoring and Ken Sio grabbed a brace on his debut on the same side.
Jackson Hastings and Evalds combined on numerous occasions throughout the game after quick ball from the likes of Greg Burke, Mark Flanagan and Joey Lussick. Evalds was the standout performer cutting through the Giants line on numerous occasions as well as setting up one of Sio’s two tries.


Sa’u had to leave the field midway through the first half with a rib injury with Jansin Turgut moving into the centres. The Turkish international looked just as comfortable as Sa’u as he set up the first of Sio’s double.

Mossop’s massive minutes

In his post-match press conference, Head Coach Ian Watson pointed to Captain Lee Mossop as a massive contributor to the victory as the prop-forward played sixty minutes for the Red Devils.

Mossop was a constant presence in the middle of the park. The former England international got through a lot of hard yards while keeping a powerful Giants pack quiet for the most part. 

Huddersfield – Happy hunting ground 

Last night’s victory marked the sixth consecutive victory at the John Smith’s Stadium for the Red Devils. It is also now the third consecutive season in which Salford’s first away victory of the Betfred Super League season has come at the John Smith’s Stadium.


It is also Salford’s first victory in Round One of the Betfred Super League since 2014 when the Red Devils overcame Wakefield Trinity 18-14 at the AJ Bell Stadium.

The away following

The Salford Red Devils faithful turned out in strong numbers for the opening game of the 2019 Betfred Super League season with both Ian Watson and Niall Evalds praising the following from the supporters.


The away following was extremely similar to that of last season’s trip to Halifax and were loud and proud throughout. The Red Devils host London Broncos on Sunday 10th February and will be looking for some more terrific support.

Ian Watson | “We’ve got options to manoeuvre things about”

Salford Red Devils Head Coach Ian Watson spoke to the press following a 18-28 defeat to Wigan Warriors in a pre-season friendly. Here’s what he had to say on a range of topics post-match. 

On the game and facing Wigan…

Yeah it was brilliant. It was exactly what we wanted with the lift in intensity. We knew Wigan would bring that, having the game against Swinton last week got us back into gameplay with the fitness and contact elements and then against Wigan we knew it was about coming against the intensity we’ll have to face week in and week out in the Super League. It was perfect preparation for us.

On Jackson Hastings leaving the field early…

He just had a little twinge from the Swinton game, so we didn’t want to overwork him. To be fair, he did more than we expected today because he was feeling good, so we worked off him. We didn’t want to risk anybody we didn’t need to. Obviously, Jackson is an important part of our team.

On Ed Chamberlain’s injury…

Ed looks like he’s the one who may have sustained a syndesmosis or something like that, so we just need to get that checked out. A syndesmosis can be any length of time out depending on how bad the grade is. It could be up to twelve weeks, but we’ll see where he is and hopefully it’s not that bad.

On Rob Lui leaving the field early…

Robbie is fine. He just clashed with Jansin Turgut in a tackle. He had another minute to do, I think he just wanted to come off there. He knew how long he had left to do so he came off a little bit earlier than we wanted him to.

On knowing his starting side for Huddersfield….

I more or less know it. With our group we’ve been able to build it over a couple of years in what we want with the characters in our team and how we want to play. We’ve been able to recruit a little bit better this year in terms of the players who’ve we’ve had to choose from. We’ve brought players in who can play the way we want to, and we’re really pleased with the guys we’ve brought in.

On Niall Evalds’ versatility…

I thought Niall was outstanding. He was a little bit like a Darren Lockyer out there playing full-back and stand-off. He’s really developed again this year. We’re just covering bases a little bit and looking at a few things because we need to deal with it if we get an injury to a half or a nine throughout the season. I thought Niall and Rob linked up well and we even had Greg Burke at hooker with Joey Lussick in the halves at one point. We’ve got options to manoeuvre things about which is important for us at a Club that doesn’t have the biggest of squads.

On Connor Davies-Aspey…

Connor has been brilliant. His is a bit more of baby steps as he still has a lot of developing to do. I think the progression will be probably looking to play at Championship or maybe League One, if there’s a side who’ll take a shot on him. He just needs to develop. That’s the difference between the U19’s and Reserves now. Years ago, there were a lot of 16-year-olds who could come through and play first team because they’d played against men already. Connor’s first game against men was last weekend against Swinton. I had to be very careful as there were a few occasions I could have thrown him on but with the likes of Tony Clubb Joe Greenwood, Liam Farrell and Ben Flower who are physical and big specimens to have thrown Connor in front of those would have been a big ask. He just needs to develop his path the right way.
 

Salford Red Devils 2019 Season Tickets are still available to purchase from the Club Ticket Office, over the phone on 0161 786 1570 or online HERE.You can spread the cost via Direct Debit payments, for more details, click HERE.

Talking Points | Salford Red Devils 18-28 Wigan Warriors

Salford Red Devils fell to defeat in their second pre-season fixture of 2019 against Wigan Warriors at the AJ Bell Stadium. However, there were still some promising talking points from the game.

First look at Ken

Ken Sio made his first appearance for the Red Devils since his off-season move from NRL side Newcastle Knights and was one of a few standout performers for Ian Watson’s side.
It took Sio just four minutes to get onto the scoresheet for Salford as he met Jackson Hastings’ low kick to the corner. The winger continued to impress bringing the ball back from deep within the Red Devils half throughout the game.
Following Hastings and Lui’s departures from the field, Niall Evalds moved into the halves with Sio slotting in at full-back where he looked equally as comfortable. The powerful Australian offers versatility in the back-line with the ability to play full-back, winger and centre which will only benefit Salford throughout 2019.
There is a strong competition for places across the back line with the likes of Jake Bibby, Ed Chamberlain, Derrell Olpherts, Kris Welham, Greg Johnson, Junior Sa’u and Evalds but Sio has certainly put his name forward to start away at Huddersfield in just under a fortnight.

Energetic Evalds 

In last week’s talking points, following victory over Swinton Lions, we mentioned the versatility of some of Salford’s key players, one of which was Niall Evalds who moved into the halves. In the defeat to Wigan, the England Knight once again was moved into the halves when Hastings and Lui left the field.
Evalds is blessed with blistering speed and fantastic ball handling ability which made him a handful for the Wigan defence once he moved into the halves. He directly assisted Jake Bibby’s try in the second half before also being involved in the build-up play to Derrell Olpherts’ late score.
While the Red Devils will be looking to Lui and Hastings to occupy the half-back slots throughout the season, Evalds is certainly showing he has the capability to take up the mantle if necessary. Ian Watson even went as far as saying Evalds reminded him of Darren Lockyer, to watch Ian Watson’s full post-match press conference, click here.

Shot clock 

The 2019 season will see the introduction of the shot clock – which has been massively successful Down Under – and it was in play for the first time at the AJ Bell Stadium against Wigan Warriors.
Two shot clocks have been installed at the AJ Bell Stadium in the South and North stands. These will countdown to encourage teams to pack scrums and take goal line drop-outs quicker.
Both sides packed down and took goal line drop-outs within the allotted time throughout the game however conversions – which aren’t yet being enforced – did often go over the allotted time limit more often than not.
It will certainly be interesting to see how teams – including the Red Devils – adapt to the new rules and the positive effects it will have on the Betfred Super League.
 
Salford Red Devils 2019 Season Tickets are still available to purchase from the Club Ticket Office, over the phone on 0161 786 1570 or online HERE.You can spread the cost via Direct Debit payments, for more details, click HERE.

Match Report | Salford Red Devils 18-28 Wigan Warriors

Salford Red Devils fell to defeat to current Betfred Super League champions Wigan Warriors at the AJ Bell Stadium in their second, and final pre-season, game of 2019.
Debutant Ken Sio put Salford ahead early on however three unanswered tries from Liam Farrell, Sam Powell and Tom Davies gave Wigan a twelve-point lead at the break.
The Red Devils again opened the scoring in the second half through Joey Lussick and inched closer to the Warriors thanks to Jake Bibby’s try. However, Morgan Escare and Zak Hardaker would cross to ensure a Wigan victory. Derrell Olpherts did notch a late consolation.
Sio – who joined in the off-season – took just four minutes to open his Salford account as he latched on to a low kick to the corner from Jackson Hastings. Ed Chamberlain’s conversion fell short of the sticks.
Wigan took their time getting into the game, but Farrell managed to spin away from three Salford defenders to score before Hardaker’s conversion put the visitors in front. Powell would scoot under the Red Devils defence shortly after to extend the lead. Hardaker again converted.
With half-time approaching, Wigan would cross again as a looping George Williams pass found Davies on the wing to further the Warriors’ lead heading into the interval.
It was again Salford who started the quicker in the second half, however. Gil Dudson went close for the Red Devils but a quick play-the-ball on the Wigan line allowed Lussick to throw a nice dummy before burrowing his way under the Warriors defence. Chamberlain added the extras to put Salford just one score behind.
Evalds – who had now moved into the halves in place of Jackson Hastings – was causing issues for the Wigan defence and it was his ball to Bibby which created Salford’s third. The winger adjusted his run well, stepped inside the onrushing Wigan defenders and held three of them off to plant the ball down. Lussick – who was now on goal kicking duties in place of an injured Chamberlain – hit both the post and bar meaning the Red Devils still trailed.
Wigan came back at the Red Devils and would score two tries in eight minutes down the left-hand flank. Escare was the beneficiary of the first break before Hardaker would get on the end of the second in his first game for the Warriors.
In the closing stages Salford would score once more to narrow the deficit. Evalds and Sa’u linked up well before the latter flicked the ball out of the back to find Olpherts who pulled off a fantastic finish in the corner.
Salford: Evalds, Sio, Sa’u, Chamberlain, Bibby; Lui, Hastings; Mossop, Lussick, Murray, Jones, Turgut, Burke.
Interchanges: Griffin, McCarthy, Nakubuwai, Flanagan, Olpherts, Dudson, Davies-Aspey, Wellington.
Wigan: Hardaker, Marshall, Sarginson, Gildart, Davies; Williams, Sammut; Flower, Powell, Clubb, Isa, Farrell, Hamlin.
Interchanges: Greenwood, Navarette, Partington, Bullock, Escare, Shorrocks, Tautai, Byrne, Hankinson, Marshall, Ganson, Mullen.
Salford Tries: Sio (4’), Lussick (45’), Bibby (51’), Olpherts (75’).
Salford Goals: Chamberlain (46’),
Wigan Tries: Farrell (17’), Powell (27’), Davies (36’), Escare (61’), Hardaker (69’)
Wigan Goals: Hardaker (18’, 28’, 62’, 70’)
 
Referee: Liam Moore.
Attendance: 2190.

Talking Points | Salford Red Devils 52-6 Swinton Lions

Following Salford Red Devils’ comfortable victory over Swinton Lions in their first game of 2019, we take a look at some of the talking points from the fixture.
Attacking threat
The Red Devils ran in eleven tries in a controlled performance against Swinton and the attacking skill Ian Watson’s men possess was on show throughout. Junior Sa’u, Greg Johnson and Joey Lussick all profited from the attacking display crossing for braces while there was also another five Red Devils on the scoresheet.
Sa’u and Johnson’s tries all came on the back of some quick hands out wide. However, there was a number of occasions when Salford broke from deep thanks to the likes of Mark Flanagan, Niall Evalds, Jackson Hastings and young debutant Connor Davies-Aspey.
Flanagan – who began at loose-forward but went on to operate as half – linked up well with Evalds on a number of occasions which led to some great Red Devils tries. Hastings went through the line in almost identical fashion to his debut against Leeds Rhinos last year to set up Sa’u’s second try.
If the Red Devils can continue to cause problems from all over the field, we could see some more excellent tries throughout 2019.
Connor Davies-Aspey
Salford Red Devils Academy player Connor Davies-Aspey was awarded a one-month trial earlier this week and he certainly made the most of his opportunity against Swinton with an impressive cameo in the final twenty minutes of the game.
Davies-Aspey came onto the field and managed to make three clean breaks. His break in the final ten minutes put winger Derrell Olpherts over in the corner and he was close to finishing the game with two try-assists however pulled the trigger a second too early on his pass to Jansin Turgut just minutes earlier.
Head Coach Ian Watson praised the young hooker in his post-match press conference saying it ‘was great for young kid to come in and do that’. Read more of Ian Watson’s reaction here.
Davies-Aspey has certainly put himself in contention for a place in the squad next weekend as the Red Devils face current Betfred Super League champions Wigan Warriors in a pre-season friendly at the AJ Bell Stadium.
Versatility and depth
After the interval, Ian Watson made four changes to the starting side with Greg Johnson and Derrell Olpherts coming onto the field in place of Ed Chamberlain and Jake Bibby. Both Johnson and Olpherts would go on to score in the second half showing the quality of the Red Devils’ options on the wing this season.
In the pack, the likes of Tyrone McCarthy and Ben Nakubuwai entered the fray and made an impact following impressive forty-minute stints from Lee Mossop and new recruit Gil Dudson in the first half.
Half-back duo Jackson Hastings and Rob Lui both left the field midway through the second half with Mark Flanagan, Joey Lussick and Niall Evalds jumping into the halves. Salford’s try-scoring form didn’t slow down, and the Red Devils continued to look smooth in the absence of a permanent half-back.
The crowd 
On a cold January afternoon fans of both Salford Red Devils and Swinton Lions braved the conditions to watch their sides putting together a solid showing for a pre-season friendly with 1798 people in attendance.
Salford vs Swinton is a fixture – that was Head Coach Ian Watson pointed out earlier in the week – doesn’t happen too often anymore so it has become somewhat of a sought-after attraction. Our Betfred Championship visitors brought a strong following down the road to the AJ Bell Stadium this weekend while our loyal Red Devils were in fine voice as always showing the passion for the game in the local area.
Next weekend, the Red Devils host another local side in Wigan Warriors, and we’ll be hoping for a similarly strong turnout.
 

Tickets for Salford Red Devils’ next pre-season friendly are available to purchase at the Club Ticket Office, over the phone on 0161 786 1570 or online HERE. For a reminder of ticket prices, click HERE.Salford Red Devils 2019 Season Tickets are still available to purchase from the Club Ticket Office, over the phone on 0161 786 1570 or online HERE. You can spread the cost via Direct Debit payments, for more details, click HERE.

Ian Watson | “I thought we looked quite smooth”

Salford Red Devils got 2019 off to a great start with a 54-6 victory over local rivals Swinton Lions and Head Coach Ian Watson was pleased with various aspects of his side’s performance.

On the game…

I thought it was a good performance and we did what we’ve worked on in the pre-season. We got out of our own half a little bit too easily as we got quite a few penalties on tackle three. I’d have like to see a little more of an arm-wrestle to see more of what we have worked on. But everything that was put in front of the boys they reacted really well to especially when we were making all the changes to mix it up a bit people got plenty of game time.

On adapting following the changes…

I thought we looked quite smooth even when Jackson [Hastings] and Rob [Lui] came off and we put Niall [Evalds] into the halves. We’ve done a bit of practice in training running with different combinations just in case anything happens. We know we’ve got a small squad, but we’ve got players who can play in different positions and that was on show for us against Swinton. 

On Connor Davies-Aspey’s debut…

I was really pleased for him. He’s a baby, to be fair, and I thought he did great. He made a couple of breaks and a little bit of inexperience cost him from making a try for Jansin [Turgut] but he created a nice try for Derrell [Olpherts]. I’m sure he’ll be telling everyone about nearly getting his ribs knocked out as well, but I thought it was great for a young kid to come in and do that.

On fellow triallist – Calvin Wellington…

Calvin did really well coming in at left centre. He has the ability to play on both sides and he transfers the ball really well, but he suits us with him not having a preference as to which side he plays on.

On the players who didn’t feature…

All going well they should be included next weekend against Wigan. With the game being a little different at the moment with the stop clock we wanted our middles to get decent minutes and get used to how it feels to be under the pump and play under the stop clock. That’s why we didn’t make a change in the first half and then let the middles run for a full forty in the second half, also.

On how the players handled the stop clock…

We’ve got players here who are big enough and fit enough to play long minutes if you look at the first half, we had Mark Flanagan, Lee Mossop and Gil Dudson who all did a full forty and handled it really comfortably.

On the stop clock…

It flowed a lot better today. I thought the first ten minutes went really quickly, it used to take a long time to get to the ten-minute mark in some games but today I thought the stop clock helped today and it sped the game up. My thing with it was when you’re watching a game on Sky Sports, they were finishing way beyond 10pm and the game was getting dragged out longer and longer, but I think the stop clock kind of drags that back in really rather than it being stop-start. Hopefully, it’ll make the Betfred Super League more entertaining.

On goal kicking…

No, we’ve no issues there. Ed [Chamberlain] practices religiously so we’ve not got much of a problem with that. It was fairly windy when Ed was out there kicking today. The good thing is last year I don’t think we had a single goal kicker for the majority but now we’ve got a handful of genuine goal kickers – Ed, Jackson, Rob, Joey [Lussick] and Niall likes to put a kick in every now and again. So, we’ve no worries in that department.
 
Tickets for Salford Red Devils’ next pre-season friendly are available to purchase at the Club Ticket Office, over the phone on 0161 786 1570 or online HERE. For a reminder of ticket prices, click HERE.
Salford Red Devils 2019 Season Tickets are still available to purchase from the Club Ticket Office, over the phone on 0161 786 1570 or online HERE. You can spread the cost via Direct Debit payments, for more details, click HERE.

Match Report | Salford Red Devils 52-6 Swinton Lions

Salford Red Devils got 2019 off to a perfect start with an eleven-try rout over local rivals Swinton Lions at the AJ Bell Stadium.
Junior Sa’u, Greg Johnson and Joey Lussick all grabbed braces on a rampant afternoon for Ian Watson’s men while Jackson Hastings, Niall Evalds, Rob Lui, Ed Chamberlain and Derrell Olpherts also got their names on the scoresheet.
It was Sa’u who opened the scoring powering over from close-range after collecting the ball at the second attempt. Hastings was the provider for the opener, but he soon turned try-scorer six minutes in pouncing on Lui’s neat kick under the posts.
The Red Devils fast start continued when Mark Flanagan found Evalds on his inside to cut open the Swinton defence for the third time in the opening fifteen minutes. However, the Lions did cross shortly after as Oscar Thomas’ low kick wasn’t dealt with by Salford and Mike Butt was quickest to react.
Swinton’s revival was short-lived however as Lui managed to fend off three Swinton defenders to force his way over after jinking inside. With around eight minutes of the half remaining Chamberlain benefitted from some quick hands out wide to further the lead going into the break.
Head Coach Ian Watson made five changes at the break and it was substitute Johnson who got the scoring for the second half underway. The winger went close a minute earlier but was held down by Lewis Hatton who was sent to the sin-bin. However, Johnson did get on the end of a well-timed Kris Welham pass moments later.
In similar fashion to the first half, Flanagan would again find an onrushing Evalds on the inside and the full-back found Lussick in support who notched his first of the afternoon. Evalds was causing all sorts of problems for Swinton and his quick play at first receiver followed by a sublime tip-on from Welham put Johnson in for his second in just six minutes.
A try-scoring run of four in nine minutes was rounded off when Lussick’s low kick was chased down by Welham with the centre then giving it back to the Australian for his second.
Swinton would be handed another yellow card when Butt held down Olpherts who had raced seventy metres from his own try-line. The man advantage again proved dividend for Salford as Academy player and triallist Connor Davies-Aspey cut through the Lions line before finding Olpherts in the corner to round off the scoring.
Salford welcome current Betfred Super League champions Wigan Warriors to the AJ Bell Stadium on Sunday 20th January, 2pm kick-off, in their second pre-season friendly.
Salford Red Devils: Evalds, Bibby, Sa’u, Welham, Chamberlain; Lui, Hastings; Mossop, Lussick, Dudson, Jones, Turgut, Flanagan.
Interchanges: Griffin, McCarthy, Nakubuwai, Johnson, Olpherts, Davies-Aspey, Wellington.
Swinton Lions: Hansen, Butt, Lloyd, Williams, Aaronson; Fairclough, Thomas; Bennion, Waterworth, Austin, Hope, Jones, Hatton.
Interchanges: Brickhill, Gray, Hall, Halton, Jones, Kenga, Ratu, Warne, Worrall, Ashton.
 
Salford Tries: Sa’u (3’, 35’), Hastings (6’), Evalds (13’), Lui (19), Chamberlain (33’), Johnson (54’ 60), Lussick (56, 63’), Olpherts (76’).
Salford Goals: Chamberlain (7’, 14’, 34’), Lussick (64’).
Swinton Tries: Butt (16’).
Swinton Goals: Thomas (17’).
 
Swinton Sin-bins: Hatton (52’), Butt (67’).
 
Referee: Liam Moore.
Attendance: 1798.

Salford Red Devils 2019 Squad Numbers

Salford Red Devils are delighted to reveal our squads playing numbers ahead of the 2019 season.
Ken Sio is set to wear 23 following his arrival at the AJ Bell Stadium. Gil Dudson has been named at number ten while fellow new signings Adam Lawton and Adam Walker will wear 25 and 15, respectively.
Josh Wood – who was last year’s Young Player of the Year – has moved to number nine. Fellow youngster Jake Bibby has moved to number five.
Greg Burke and Ed Chamberlain who arrived midway through 2017 have been given 16 and two.
Jackson Hastings will remain as number 31, the number he wore when originally joining the Club in July. Joey Lussick will wear 14.
Niall Evalds has moved to number one, the position he occupied for the majority of last season.
The full squad list and sponsors are as follows:

  1. Niall Evalds sponsored by The Dog & Partridge
  2. Ed Chamberlain sponsored by Sparta Lightning Services
  3. Kris Welham sponsored by Process Gas Services
  4. Junior Sa’u sponsored by FAC Site Services
  5. Jake Bibby sponsored by Executive VPA
  6. Robert Lui sponsored by Steadfast Epoxy Flooring
  7. N/A
  8.  Lee Mossop sponsored by Austin Wilkinson
  9. Josh Wood sponsored by SRD Roofing
  10. Gil Dudson sponsored PH Services
  11. Josh Jones sponsored by Oakwood Engineering
  12. George Griffin sponsored by SuperJosh
  13. Mark Flanagan sponsored by Sparta Lightning Services
  14. Joey Lussick sponsored by Salmon King
  15. Adam Walker
  16. Greg Burke sponsored by Kinpaja
  17. Tyrone McCarthy sponsored by Arlec Property Services
  18. Ben Nakubuwai sponsored by Sparta Lightning Services
  19. Logan Tomkins sponsored by PH Services
  20. Daniel Murray sponsored by Juniper Gin Bar
  21. Greg Johnson sponsored by CD Brick & Stone
  22. Derrell Olpherts sponsored by Gold Line Draw
  23. Ken Sio sponsored by Advanced Steel
  24. Jansin Turgut sponsored by Acrobat FCSM
  25. Adam Lawton sponsored by Murray Metals
  26. N/A
  27. N/A
  28. N/A
  29. N/A
  30. N/A
  31. Jackson Hastings sponsored by Advanced Steel

Remember, for the best value for money you can still purchase a Salford Red Devils 2019 Season Ticket from the AJ Bell Stadium Ticket Office, over the phone on 0161 786 1570 or by simply clicking online HERE.
You can spread the cost of your 2019 Season Ticket over seven easy, manageable monthly payments via our Direct Debit payment scheme. To purchase your 2019 Season Ticket via Direct Debit please visit the AJ Bell Stadium Ticket Office or call 0161 786 1570. Please remember the Direct Debit option is not available via online purchases.

Gallery | Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital visit

Last week, Salford Red Devils visited Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital to give out selection boxes and toys to some amazingly strong children ahead of the Festive season.
The visit was made possible by a host of Salford Red Devils fans and local business donating an array of selection boxes and gifts alongside donations from the Club and we’d like to again thank everyone who contributed.
Head Coach Ian Watson said: “The visit to Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital was an honour for myself and the squad. To get to share some quality time with the staff and children was an amazing experience.
“The fact we could go in and be welcomed in the way we were was very special.
“We couldn’t believe the spirits of the strong children, many of whom may spend Christmas time there. The outstanding care that we witness was first class.
“All the squad loved the interaction with the patients and we hope to welcome many of them to Salford Red Devils games when on their way to recovery.”
And, we’ve put together twenty images from our visit to Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital for you to take a look at: 

Ian Watson | “They’re all at different stages”

Following the first week of pre-season training, Head Coach Ian Watson gave us an update on his squad and focused on how some of the new signings are settling in.
Adam Lawton and Gil Dudson both arrived at the AJ Bell Stadium to begin pre-season training last week and both have impressed the Head Coach.
Watson said: “Adam [Lawton] has been good. He’s finding it tough as he’s been out of the game for a little while so to come back into a Super League environment isn’t easy.
“He had his first real day last week where we were on the field, in the gym and did a little bit on the mats too. 
“Gil [Dudson] has settled in really well and has come into camp in really good condition. We know what Gil is all about as a player – he can create offloads, bust tackles and get you quick play-the-balls and he has certainly come in the right condition to set himself up for a good season.”
Salford Red Devils also brought try-scoring back Ken Sio to the Club in the off-season and while the Kiwi isn’t with the squad currently, he is expected to join them in the coming days.
Watson said: “Ken [Sio] has had his visa appointment on Friday, so he’ll get that then it’s normally five to seven days but hopefully in the next couple of weeks he’ll be over here and ripping in with the rest of the lads.
“We’ve been in touch with Ken and he has been set a programme, so he isn’t missing out on any of the training.”
Other than Sio, the other two absentees in week one of pre-season were Niall Evalds and Tyrone McCarthy following their international exploits with England Knights and Ireland, respectively.
Watson said: “Niall [Evalds] played the one game in Papua New Guinea and also did a lot of travelling over there as well.
“Tyrone [McCarthy] has played three games for Ireland. They’re all at different stages but Niall will be back in with us next week and Tyrone will come back in next week, but he’ll be on a lifting programme more than on the field.”