I know I’ve probably said this before but a week can be a very long time in the world of Rugby League. Salford were brought back down to earth at Hull last weekend but a victory this week at Huddersfield would be another great result. It’s not going to be easy though, Ian Watson has made some significant signings for 2022. Chris Hill looks to be a very astute acquisition from Warrington. He will form the cornerstone of the Giants pack and he’s a terrific leader on the pitch who works his socks off. Watson has also brought in Tui Lolohea from Salford and former Red Devils star Theo Fages from St.Helens.
Last season this fixture was an absolute cracker with Salford edging it 8-9. The match was packed with incident, controversy and excitement.
The ex Salford players at Huddersfield will add plenty of spice to this fixture. The Giants have made a solid start to the season with two victories over Toulouse and Hull Kingston Rovers. Last week they put in a very resilient performance away at Wigan but were beaten 22-12.
Their was a fair amount of expectation at Huddersfield last year and that has now spilled over into this season after a disappointing 2021 campaign. Watson’s side now looks more balanced with plenty of attacking flair along with players who will do the donkey work week in week out.
This fixture is always a big favourite with Salford supporters. The Red Devils haven’t lost this fixture since 2013. Their have been some real memorable matches too. Kevin Locke’s debut in 2014, the Easter match in 2015 and of course the 8-9 we’ve already mentioned. Personally speaking I can’t wait for Sunday.
Super League away Record.
1998 Huddersfield 12 Salford 16
1999 Huddersfield 24 Salford 10
2000 Huddersfield/Sheffield 10 Salford 18
2001 Huddersfield 24 Salford 32
2001 Huddersfield 35 Salford 14
2004 Huddersfield 26 Salford 14
2004 Huddersfield 28 Salford 22
2005 Huddersfield 26 Salford 10
2006 Huddersfield 32 Salford 18
2006 Huddersfield 24 Salford 18
2007 Huddersfield 16 Salford 18
2009 Huddersfield 4 Salford 24
2010 Huddersfield 52 Salford 4
2011 Huddersfield 52 Salford 22
2012 Huddersfield 36 Salford 10
2013 Huddersfield 46 Salford 4
2014 Huddersfield 10 Salford 36
2015 Huddersfield 12 Salford 18
2016 Huddersfield 24 Salford 26
2017 Huddersfield 20 Salford 30
2018 Huddersfield 12 Salford 30
2019 Huddersfield 14 Salford 34
2020 Huddersfield 16 Salford 24
2021 Huddersfield 8 Salford 9
They played for both.
Here are a selection of players who have played for both clubs;
Steve Kerry, Danny Arnold, Greg Austin, David Bradbury, Jodie Broughton, Ryan Clayton, Gavin Clinch, Greg Eden, Simon Finnigan, Matt Gardner, Lee Gaskell, Martin Gleeson, Bobbie Goulding, Darrel Griffin, Josh Griffin, Neil Harmon, David Hodgson, Graham Holroyd, Andy Johnson, Phil Joseph, Craig Kopzack, Michael korkidas, Tommy Lee, Martin Moana, Chris Nero, Robbie Paul, Luke Robinson, Jordan Turner, Adam Walne, Paul White,Stephen Wild, Luke Yates, Theo Fages, Josh Jones and Tui Lolohea.
A MATCH TO REMEMBER 5TH JULY 2014.
Huddersfield 10 Salford 36
Salford overcame the dismissal of Lama Tasi for a late tackle on Danny Brough to record their best win of a mostly troubled season. In the glorious Yorkshire sunshine Kevin Locke made his eagerly anticipated debut. The New Zealander lived up to the expectations with a thrilling display. Salford’s speed was there for all to see as they tore the Giants apart down the flanks with Locke and Mason Caton Brown scoring long range tries.
Lama Tasi was shown a red card on the hour mark for a Challenge on Danny Brough. Salford were leading 4-18 at this stage.
Despite being down to twelve men it was a wonderful day for us running in three more tries from Greg Johnson, Theo Fages and Kevin Locke.
Going in to this game Huddersfield had won 9 out of there last 10 matches. This was a day where everything clicked for Iestyn Harris’s Salford side and the travelling supporters certainly had a new hero in Locke.
For one reason or another Locke’s time at Salford didn’t really work out. Injury problems seemed to scupper his progress. In the end he left and went to Wakefield but sadly it ended in strange circumstances there too.
The teams that day:
Huddersfield; Grix, McGilvary, Cudjoe, Wardle, Broughton, Brough, Wood, Kopzack, Robinson, Johnson, Ferres, Ta’ai, Lawrence.
Subs, Crabtree, Bailey, Patrick, Faiumu.
Salford; Locke, Johnson, Sa’u, Caton-Brown, Josh Griffin, Chase, Fages, Morley, Lee, Tasi, Ashurst, Jordan Walne, Puletua.
Subs, Rapira, Walton, Darrell Griffin, Niall Evalds.
Referee, Robert Hicks.
One thing Salford will need on Sunday is composure. The victory at Castleford was like a well planned mission. Their was no panic and every player did his job. Last Saturday at Hull the composure went out of the window. We seemed to try and score on every play in the early stages of the match instead of building pressure and picking the right moment to strike.
Speaking after the match at Hull Paul Rowley was obviously very disappointed. Their was however a calmness to his demeanour. It’s not the time to start ringing alarm bells. Salford have got the quality to have a very good season. Sometimes in Rugby League the match can run away from you fairly quickly. Your opposition gets momentum and you start to unravel fast.
Losing James Greenwood in the warm up with a groin problem definitely didn’t help last week and Rowley may now have to make a change or two. One selection headache is the centre position. Deon Cross will be expected to return after Dan Sarginson received a one match ban. Ryan Brierley is also suspended for one match so it will be interesting to see who gets to play fullback. Ken Sio could switch or maybe Morgan Escare will come into the side.
King Vuniyayawa continues to impress in the pack. His strong running and work rate catches the eye every week. For me King V has a huge future in the sport and I think he will only get better. He seems to have a great attitude and work ethic.
Dan Sarginson received some good news this week with his inclusion in the England training squad. With the World Cup on the horizon at the end of the season their are players in the Salford squad who could also make the cut if they can keep some good form all year. It’s definitely something for players to aim for.
Well Sunday promises to be a fascinating encounter and one not to be missed.
The action gets underway at 3pm.
Safe travels and enjoy the match.
Big thanks to Steve McCormick for the photos.