Player ratings as three cards shown in feisty Huddersfield Giants-Salford Red Devils affair

SALFORD RED DEVILS overcame two sinbinnings to register an impressive 18-4 victory over Huddersfield Giants.

Salford started the brighter of the two sides, centre Nene Macdonald picking off a Jake Connor pass to streak home from 70 metres in the eighth minute. Marc Sneyd converted to make it 6-0.

Shortly after, the Red Devils hit again, Ethan Ryan outstripping the hosts’ defence after taking a neat inside pass from Macdonald as the Salford centre proved far too strong for his opposite number Esan Marsters once more. Sneyd added the extras to make it 12-0 just after the midway point in the first-half.

The visitors were hungry, though, and they forced two more drop-outs in succession but this time they were denied a third for a harsh obstruction call after Ryan Brierley had cantered through a gap.

As everyone knows, rugby league can turn in an instant and following a smart Connor pass in the next set, Marsters was hit high by Brierley. For his sins, the Salford fullback was sinbinned with a minute remaining.

Huddersfield, however, couldn’t post any points with the visitors leading 12-0 at the break.


The visitors’ ascendancy continued after half-time as Rowley’s side forced two more drop-outs despite being a man down.

And it was that man Macdonald again that crossed the whitewash, burrowing over from dummy-half through soft tackling.

Huddersfield just weren’t clicking with ball after ball being put down, with Wallis dropping it cold with the line begging on the hour.

The winger hadn’t had the best of games up until that point and his frustration boiled over, appearing to push his head onto Salford’s Tim Lafai. That indiscretion saw Wallis given red by referee Tom Grant.

The dismissal, however, seemingly motivated the Giants and after Sam Halsall was obstructed chasing a kick, Atkin was this time sinbinned.

As it was, it took the hosts 71 minutes to finally breach the Red Devils’ steel wall with delicate passing down the left creating the opportunity and space for Adam Swift to dot down. Connor missed the conversion as Salford still led 18-4.

Tui Lolohea threatened a late comeback with a brilliant chip and chase moments later. And with Connor’s conversion bringing the Giants back to within eight at 18-10, there was still hope.

A Huddersfield side finally clicking into gear was a joy to watch as Adam Clune forced a late drop-out. Incredibly, slick passing found its way to Jake Bibby who flew in magnificently with just under two minutes left on the clock. Connor’s conversion reduced the deficit to just two at 18-16.

Salford, however, hung on for a priceless victory.

Huddersfield Giants
1 Jake Connor – 7
2 Adam Swift – 8
3 Esan Marsters – 7
4 Kevin Naiqama – 6
20 Elliot Wallis – 2
6 Tui Lolohea – 6
7 Adam Clune – 7
17 Olly Wilson – 7
9 Adam Milner – 4
10 Joe Greenwood – 5
16 Harry Rushton – 6
24 Sam Halsall – 5
13 Luke Yates – 6
5 Jake Bibby – 6
14 Ash Golding – 6
18 Sebastine Ikahihifo – 7
26 Hugo Salabio – 4

Tries: Swift (71), Lolohea (75), Bibby (78)
Goals: Connor 2/3
Red card: Wallis (60) – headbutt

Salford Red Devils
1 Ryan Brierley – 9
2 Ethan Ryan – 8
3 Nene Macdonald – 9
4 Tim Lafai – 8
5 Deon Cross – 7
14 Chris Atkin – 6
7 Marc Sneyd – 9
8 Brad Singleton – 7
24 Joe Mellor – 6
17 Jack Ormondroyd – 7
11 Sam Stone – 6
12 Kallum Watkins (C) – 7
13 Oliver Partington – 6
6 Cade Cust – 7
15 Shane Wright – 6
16 Joe Shorrocks – 7
27 Gil Dudson – 7

Tries: Macdonald (8, 48), Ryan (20)
Goals: Sneyd 3/3
Sinbin: Brierley (39) – high tackle, Atkin (64) – obstruction

Click here to get the digital edition of League Express

Click here to subscribe to the print edition of League Express

League Express is also widely available from local newsagents across the north of England.

Click here to listen to the League Express Podcast