Wakefield 46 Salford (Reds) 0
The confidence which had grown within the ranks of the U19’s Red side, following their success in their home fixture against Huddersfield, last week, took something of a knock, in this week’s away encounter at Wakefield Trinity, to face the team which has won the competition over the last few years.
The step up in standard was evident from the outset, though the younger, and relatively inexperienced Red Devils did manage to compete, set for set, in the early stages, but once the home side got on the scoreboard, they quickly increased their advantage to take an 18-0 half time lead.
Coach, Danny Barton, was, nevertheless, philosophical in his assessment of his team’s performance.
“We knew we were going to be up against a really class team from how they have performed over recent seasons, and their whole side had both experience, and physical maturity, which we were lacking in.
“This was obviously the biggest test the lads are going to get, this season, especially with it being away from home, while the scoreline was compounded by the excellent goalkicking from all areas of the field to convert all but one of Wakefield’s tries.”
The sheer level of concentration which is needed too compete at this intensity is extremely demanding, and it was their first lapse in this area, which led to their conceding the first try.
“A couple of players got sucked in, and that left an overlap on the wing that was exploited to the full with a try in the corner.
“Although our attack was well below standard, our defence was really quite good, especially around the ruck area. That is something we had been working on, and so it was quite gratifying to see the improvement there.
“The game has, though, thrown up a number of other areas requiring attention, so it is going to be a case of systematically working through each of these to bring them all up to par.”
With half term coming up next week, this will provide a welcome breather for them all to re-compose themselves, and work on a number of the areas to which Danny refers. With another trip over into Yorkshire, in a fortnight’s time, to take on Halifax, this will be most necessary.
“Halifax are another side which have also been most consistent in their performances over recent seasons, and are currently second in the league, this year.”
The Black team, meanwhile, have a much lengthier lay off, as a result of Wigan & Leigh College calling off their encounter yesterday, and then having a blank week immediately after the half term.