MATCH REPORT | SALFORD RED DEVILS 18-62 WARRINGTON WOLVES | THURSDAY 27TH MAY 2021

Salford Red Devils fell to a bruising 18-62 defeat against neighbours Warrington Wolves tonight in Round 8 of the Betfred Super League.

A poor start to the game gave Warrington an 18-point lead inside the first 15 minutes and a dominant second half display from Steve Price’s men ensured the visitors went home with the two points.

Stefan Ratchford opened the scoring down the right wing after two minutes after some great play from Blake Austin that left the recovering Red Devils outnumbered down their left flank.

Danny Walker extended Warrington’s lead five minutes later under the sticks, before Toby King grounded the ball in the 11th minute to really put Salford up against it.

In the 22nd minute, Ken Sio finally got Salford on the board with almost a carbon copy of his try against Leigh Centurions in Round 4, sprinting the full length of the field to ground the ball down the right.

In-form Harvey Livett went over to the left of the sticks 10 minutes later against his former club but Jake Mamo ensured that Warrington went into the break with the momentum, sliding over under the sticks just before the halftime hooter.

Halftime: Salford Red Devils 12-26 Warrington Wolves

Two minutes into the second forty, Gareth Widdop scurried over to extend the visitors’ lead.

Salford responded seven minutes later through Darcy Lussick, who bundled over to the left of the sticks to score his first try in a Salford try.

Jake Mamo, again, got Warrington back in control of the arm wrestle four minutes later, stretching out to ground down the right.

Toby King got himself on the scoreboard again on the hour mark, bundling over to the left of the sticks, followed by a Chris Hill try five minutes later.

Ben Currie ran the length of the field 10 minutes from time to score in front of the Wire fans, and just before the final hooter, Widdop touched down once more under the sticks.

Fulltime: Salford Red Devils 18-62 Salford Red Devils

Salford Red Devils: Escare, Sio, Watkins, Livett, Williams, Lolohea, Atkin, Ormondroyd, Taylor, Ikahihifo, Lannon, Roberts, Burke, Lussick, Wells, Luckley, Patton.

Salford tries: Sio, Livett, Lussick

Salford goals: Livett (3/3)

Warrington Wolves: Ratchford, Lineham, King, Mamo, Charnley, Austin, Widdop, Hill, Walker, Philbin, Currie, Hughes, Davis, Mulhem, J. Clark, Akauola, D. Clark.

Warrington tries: Ratchford, Walker, King,  Mamo (2), Widdop (2), King (2), Hill, Currie

Warrington goals: Ratchford (11/11)

Image credit: Steve McCormick

ELLIOT KEAR TO JOIN BRADFORD BULLS

Salford Red Devils’ number 19 Elliot Kear will depart for Bradford Bulls at the end of the month.

A step down to the Betfred Championship where he will be able to continue playing rugby league part-time, will allow the 32-year-old to pursue a career as a fireman, preparing himself for life outside of the sport.

The Wales captain arrived at the The Salford Stadium from London Broncos prior to the 2020 Betfred Super League season, along with fellow countryman Rhys Williams.

Kear helped the Red Devils reach a Betfred Challenge Cup Final in his first season and has frequently featured for Salford this year under Richard Marshall, but the head coach respects and understands Kear’s decision.

Speaking on Kear’s departure, Marshall said: “Elliot has been fantastic to work with and coach and he is a character that will certainly be missed at the club.

“As a former player, I know that rugby league is a short career and this step down to competing on a part-time basis will allow Elliot to build a future outside of the sport.

He goes with our full support and I wish him and his family all the best for the future. He will always be part of the Salford family.”

Director of Rugby and Operations Ian Blease said: “When Elliot told me he would like to take up a new role in the Fire Brigade and explained the reasons why, I completely understood.

“As a club we aim to assist our players in their life and career journey post rugby league, so our decision to allow Elliot to leave is the perfect opportunity for him to now go and build his career off the pitch as well as playing part-time rugby.

“Elliot has been an absolute pleasure to work with and he will leave with my best wishes for the future for himself and his family.”

Consistency is crucial for Marshall in back-to-back Castleford contests

Head coach Richard Marshall is relishing the chance to play Castleford Tigers this Friday at the A.J Bell Stadium.

The Red Devils got their first Betfred Super League win over Leigh Centurions last Friday, but Marshall is now focused on building momentum and consistency.

“A win raises everybody’s spirit but then expectations are lifted as well,” said Marshall.

“We want to be able to back up our performances and build on our efforts. We know the challenge is going to be difficult against Castleford but we’re at home, and we want to build on our home form as well.”

Castleford, who recently appointed Lee Radford as head coach for the 2022 Betfred Super League season, have started the season strongly.

The Tigers sit 4th in the Betfred Super League, winning three out of their first four league games this season.

Castleford’s attack has been particularly impressive, boasting the most tries scored so far this season. Marshall knows his defence will be have to be on top form.

Marshall said: “That would be the main challenge this week.”

“Castleford are a very good attacking team. They’ve got some flair and skills on the edges. Are we able to compete and go against them? Yes, we are.”

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Marshall is faced with another selection headache with Matt Costello unavailable and Elijah Taylor still ruled out, but there will be a return to the squad in the shape of Kallum Watkins.

It will also be the first of back-to-back contests with Castleford Tigers, with both teams meeting again in next week’s Betfred Challenge Cup Quarter-Finals. But that won’t have too much bearing on Friday’s game according to Marshall.

“You know a lot more about the opposition but at the level we coach at you watch 3-4 games of opposition every week before a game,” Marshall added.

“It’s a double-edge sword really, they find a little more about you and you find a little more about them. But we’re not a team that wants to change too much. We want to find our own style. Castleford have been working as a team for a long time. They do things in certain ways and there very, very effective, so our defence has to be on this week.”

“A cup game is completely different though. A cup game is a one-off, it’s knockout and it’s a Quarter-Final so we’ll look forward to that but hopefully win this one first and build some momentum into that game.”

Subscribe to RDTV to hear everything Richard Marshall had to say ahead of Round 5.

Image credit: Steve McCormick

Written by: Callum Williams

Marshall – “We’ll have to be at our best”

Salford Red Devils head coach Richard Marshall is looking to build momentum from his team’s first Betfred Super League win of the season when his side take on Castleford Tigers this Friday.

Salford ran out 34-8 winners over Leigh Centurions last Friday. Yet Marshall knows that his team will have to be at their best come their next tie.

“It will be a tough game, they’re a good team,” Marshall said.

“We’ll have to be at our best, our defence will have to improve, our ball control will have to improve. But I think there’s a lot more improvement with this squad, we’ve gave ourselves a chance and we’ll be going to compete.”

Castleford lost their first game of the season 22-12 last Thursday to Wigan Warriors. The Tigers sit 4th in the Betfred Super League standings and will be looking to bounce back from their loss when Salford welcome them at the AJ Bell stadium.

But spirits will be high in the Salford camp after their first league victory for not only the club, but the head coach as well.

“We feel good,” said Marshall. “We know we have to play better over the next couple of weeks.

“We’re all in it together. It’s not about me. For our club and our supporters, we owed them a performance. When you do that you usually win the game, so we look to concentrate on the performance first and as a result of performing really well.”

Marshall will have some thinking to do ahead of the clash with Tigers, with a number of regulars potentially unavailable for Round 5.

Marshall added: “We had a couple of injuries from the Catalans game. Kallum Watkins he’s got a small fracture in the hand; we don’t think it’s too bad, but he may miss next week (this Friday).

“Pauli Pauli rolled his ankle, so he wasn’t fit. Elijah (Taylor) has a shoulder problem that we can’t keep on top of.”

You can watch Salford Red Devils vs Castleford Tigers live on Sky Sports, kick-off at 7:45pm, or on Our League if you’re a season ticket holder.

Image credit: Steve McCormick

Written by: Callum Williams

MATCH REPORT | SALFORD RED DEVILS 34-8 LEIGH CENTURIONS | FRIDAY 23 APRIL 2021

Salford Red Devils marked the return of Betfred Super League action at the The Salford Stadium, with a 34-8 victory over neighbours Leigh Centurions.

After trailing early on and going into the break two points behind the visitors, a strong performance in the second forty ensured Richard Marshall secured his first Betfred Super League win at the helm at Salford.

It took only six minutes for the first try of the game and it was Leigh who struck first, Matthew Russell receiving the ball down the left wing and grounding near the corner.

Salford took the lead, however, just over 15 minutes later through James Greenwood, who had only been on the field a matter of minutes in replace of the injured Matt Costello, before he powered over the Leigh line to the left of the sticks.

Leigh responded just before the half-hour mark, again finding success down the left flank and this time it was Iain Thornley who scored for the Centurions.

Half time: Salford Red Devils 6-8 Leigh Centurions

Salford came out looking the livelier outfit in the second forty and Kevin Brown put the Red Devils back in front in the 50th minute, finding a gap in the Leigh line and darting over to the right.

15 minutes later, Krisnan Inu intercepted a Leigh pass and just managed to bat the ball to Sio, who was too quick f0r the Centurions, running almost the length of the field to ground the ball down the right and pick up his third Betfred Super League try in four games.

James Greenwood, who had looked threatening ever since he came on, broke the line in the 70th minute and fed Harvey Livett who, in turn, fed Brown for his second try of the game, this time towards the left of the sticks.

Livett set up his second try in as many minutes, this time feeding Chris Atkin for his first Betfred Super League try of the season.

Livett picked up a try of his own just before the hooter, and just minutes after he saw a try ruled out for obstruction, after some great passing down the left set the number 20 up for his second Betfred Super League try in two consecutive games.

Salford welcome Castleford Tigers to the The Salford Stadium in a week’s time, in Round 5 of the Betfred Super League. Sign up to RDTV to hear everything Richard Marshall had to say in tonight’s post-match press conference.

Full time: Salford Red Devils 34-8 Leigh Centurions

Salford Red Devils: Kear, Sio, Inu, Costello, Williams, Lolohea, Brown, Mossop, Patton, Ikahihifo, Livett, Roberts, Wells, Greenwood, Lussick, Atkin, Burke.

Leigh Centurions: Mullen, Russell, Gelling, Thornley, Tierney, Reynolds, Brierley, McCarthy, Hood, Flower, Hellewell, Thompson, Bell, Peats, Ioane, Gerrard, Gee.

Salford tries: Greenwood, Brown, Sio, Brown, Atkin, Livett

Salford goals: Inu (5/6)

Leigh tries: Russell, Thornley

Referee: James Child

Image credit: Steve McCormick

Ormondroyd – “My goal is to try and nail down a spot in the team every week”

Prop Jack Ormondroyd seized on his opportunity last Saturday, capping off his great performance against Widnes Vikings in the Betfred Challenge Cup with a Man of the Match honour.

Now Ormondroyd will be knocking on head coach Richard Marshall’s door for a consistent spot in the starting line-up.

“My goal is to try and nail down a spot in the team every week,” Ormondroyd said.

“I had a meeting with Rich (Richard Marshall) and Danny (Orr) pre-season, and we set some goals and that was one of my goals. I’ve put quite a lot of work in pre-season and hopefully Rich and Danny have seen that and hopefully it will pull off.”

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The number 25 made 7 appearances in his debut season in Salford last term. By his own account, Ormondroyd believes his performance against Widnes is a way to help nail down his spot in the Salford team.

There were also a lot of opportunities handed to new signings, with players such as Morgan Escare, Darcy Lussick and Matt Costello all featuring in the weekend’s win.

Ormondroyd talked about building chemistry with the newer players in the squad and the harmony within the dressing room.

“With all new teams it takes quite a bit of time to gel. I think we’ve had a long pre-season, we met up the week before Christmas, so we’ve had a lot of time now together. All the new lads are good lads.”

“That’s a big thing here at Salford, we talked about it a lot last year and this year. I’ve been good mates with everyone, having no bad eggs in the team, and that goes a really long way in making you a successful team. Everybody wants to work hard for each other and work hard for the coach as well. “

The Red Devils return to Betfred Super League action this Saturday against Catalans Dragons in Perpignan. Catalans have won all three of their opening games this season and Ormondroyd knows they are going to be a tough test.

Ormondroyd added: “It will be a tough game. They’ve got a big pack, but I think it’s a good chance for us.

“We didn’t have two great performances in our last two, so we talked about restarting our season against Widnes. It’s a step up this week.”

Image credit: Steve McCormick

Written by: Callum Williams

Marshall – “He’s a shining star for us”

Head coach Richard Marshall was delighted with a number of individual performances from his Red Devils side in last Saturday’s comfortable victory over Widnes Vikings in the Betfred Challenge Cup.

 The dominant 68-4 victory over Widnes booked the Red Devils a place in the Quarter-Finals of the Betfred Challenge Cup, in what was Marshall’s first runout in the competition as the Salford head coach. 

 The victory was highlighted by a Man of the Match performance from Jack Ormondroyd, and Morgan Escare and Matt Costello both picking up two tries each on their debuts for Salford.

 It was a particularly great afternoon for Ormondroyd, who repeatedly broke the Widnes line and looked a constant threat, capping his Man of the Match performance with a try of his own. 

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 Speaking on Salford’s number 25, Marshall said: “He’s one of those unsung heroes within our team. He had a really good, solid game for us, he looked strong in contact, but his challenge would be to do that every week.

 “Hes probably on the periphery of the first team at our club. He’s not a young man anymore, if he wants to be Super League player, hes going to have to play week in, week out against the best team and packs in the country. 

“He’s been good over the past couple of weeks so he’s a shining star for us.”  

 Marshall was also full of praise for Escare and Costello.

 “They’ve obviously been knocking on the door the last couple of weeks,” Marshall added.

“Both new players to our club and both took their opportunities really, really well. I thought defensively, Matt had some reads when challenged and I thought Morgan was everywhere… he’s electric. They’ll gain a lot of confidence.” 

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 Despite the blowout win, Marshall still acknowledged the effort put in from Widnes, in a contest that began quite evenly matched.

Marshall said: They had some quality in their troops. I thought their half backs had a good go and challenged us at times. But for our guys we scored some wonderful points.

“Albeit it was against a Championship side, but you’ve still got to score, make breaks, offload and from that point of view it was really encouraging.”  

Salford travel to Castleford Tigers in the Betfred Challenge Cup Quarter-Final, which will be contested over the first weekend of May.

Image credit: Steve McCormick

Written by: Callum Williams

MATCH REPORT | SALFORD RED DEVILS 68-4 WIDNES VIKINGS | SATURDAY 10TH APRIL 2021

Salford Red Devils booked themselves a place in the Betfred Challenge Cup Quarter-Final this afternoon with a dominant 68-4 victory over Widnes Vikings.

In what was Richard Marshall’s first Betfred Challenge Cup game as Salford head coach, the Red Devils responded massively to recent defeats, with debutants Morgan Escare and Matt Costello both picking up two tries each.

It was the Frenchman Escare who opened the scoring at the The Salford Stadium in the 13th minute, strolling over after Jack Ormondroyd, today’s Man of the Match, broke the Widnes line to set Escare up.

Costello picked up a debut try of his own five minutes later, scrambling over the line to the left of the sticks to extend Salford’s lead.

The number 24 then scored another in the 22nd minute, opening Widnes up with a dummy pass before darting over the line down the left.

Darcy Lussick came on for Lee Mossop in the 23rd minute to make his debut for the Red Devils, and just over ten minutes later Tui Lolohea added to Salford’s lead.

Welshman Rhys Williams breached the Widnes line with a fantastic run and set up Lolohea who was just fast enough to make it to the line and ground the ball in the 35th minute.

Just before the half-time hooter, Widnes got themselves onto the scoreboard for the first and only time of the afternoon through Daniel Hill down the left flank.

Half-time: Salford Red Devils 24-4 Widnes Vikings

Four minutes into the second forty, Dec Patton scrambled over the line to the left of the posts to score his first try as a Red Devil.

Andy Ackers entered the field four minutes later for Lolohea, and scored a try of his own within the first minute of being on the pitch.

Seb Ikahihifo powered over two minutes before the hour mark for his first try of 2021, the Widnes defence no match for Salford’s number 10.

Kallum Watkins went over in the 64th minute after some quality link-up play with Pauli Pauli, who powered through a handful of Widnes players to set Watkins up to the right of the sticks.

Ormondroyd, who had been a handful all afternoon for the Vikings, broke the Widnes line again in the 73rd minute and this time grounded the ball himself.

Three more tries from Rhys Williams, Morgan Escare and Chris Atkin rounded off what was a spectacular performance for Salford Red Devils, who progress to the Quarter-Final of the Betfred Challenge Cup.

Fulltime: Salford Red Devils 68-4 Widnes Vikings

Salford Red Devils: Escare, Williams, Watkins, Inu, Lolohea, Ormondroyd, Patton, Mossop, Livett, Pauli, Wells, Roberts, Ackers, Lussick, Ikahihifo.

Widnes Vikings: Hill, Cross, Spedding, Roby, Buckley, Craven, Smith, Grady, Else, Jewitt, Tyrer, Lawton, Owens, Lyons, Clough, Tilleke, Wilde.

Salford tries: Escare (2), Costello (2), Lolohea, Patton, Ackers, Ikahihifo, Watkins, Ormondroyd, Williams, Atkin.

Salford goals: Inu (10/12)

Widnes tries: Hill

Referee: Scott Mikalauskas

Image credit: Steve McCormick

Marshall – “We’re ready for the challenge”

Head Coach Richard Marshall has said that he wants his Salford Red Devils team to produce quality performances at the AJ Bell stadium ahead of the team’s first competitive home game of the season.

Salford will face Widnes Vikings in the Third Round of the Betfred Challenge Cup on Saturday, and Marshall expressed that he was looking forward to the match.

Marshall said: “We played a couple of friendlies here and I thought we played really well in them.

“We want to play really well at home this year, and we’ve got an opportunity this week to do that.”

While the match will be played without fans in attendance, Marshall explained he was relishing the return of fans, saying that he looked forward to building a rapport with the local community.

Marshall added: “I want to get a relationship with our support and our local community.

“The lifeblood of our game is our fans, and we want to repay them with our performances on the pitch.”

Salford will be the favourites when they face Widnes, but Marshall warned against underestimating the Betfred Championship side.

“I’m sure Widnes will be coming with a really concise game plan and try to unnerve and rattle us,” Marshall explained.

“The Championship teams come with lots of energy, lots of enthusiasm and a really good simple plan.”

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Marshall revealed that he wanted to strike a balance between selecting a strong team and rotation but would be forced in to making some certain changes, confirming that both Dan Sarginson and Elijah Taylor will be out through injury. Kevin Brown is also unavailable due to suspension.

Marshall said: “We want to win this game and progress in the Challenge Cup.

“We’ve got some fringe players that have not played and who I’ve not had a look at yet, but at the same time we’ve not found our rhythm.

“We want to put a strong team out and we want to go and win the game.

“We’re ready for the challenge.”

Image credit: Steve McCormick

Written by: Patrick Ryan

“It won’t define our season” – Marshall on Round 1 defeat

Salford Red Devils head coach Richard Marshall is confident that his side will recover from the defeat to St. Helens in last night’s season opener. 

The Betfred Super League Round 1 clash with Saints ended 29-6 to Kristian Woolf’s men but Marshall is not worried and believes his side, which featured five new faces last night, just need a little time to gel.

Marshall said: “It’s our first competitive hit-out.

“We’re a new team. It’ll take time for us to gel and it’ll take time for us to find our combinations.

“The players are disappointed, as am I. We want to win everything – it was my first Super League game as head coach and I wanted to win it.

“We’ll review the game and we’ll learn through that but it won’t define our season losing to St. Helens.”

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Despite the disappointing result, Marshall was pleased with some of what he saw defensively.

Marshall said: “I thought defensively at times we were really strong and we outmuscled them but we just couldn’t do it consistently for the 80 minutes.

“We had some really resolute defence on our line, we stopped a handful of tries.

“I think if we’d been a bit more resilient with the ball and a bit more disciplined we could have got a few more scores and made it a contest.”

Marshall was particularly impressed with Salford’s new number 13 Elijah Taylor, who had a Man of the Match performance on his Betfred Super League debut.

Image credit: Steve McCormick

“I thought Elijah Taylor was outstanding,” Marshall added.

“I thought his work rate in and around the middle and what he did with the ball was brilliant.

“In training he’s one of the most vocal, one of the most professional players we’ve got.”

You can listen to the full post-match press conference here by subscribing to RDTV.

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