It certainly didn’t feel like June as the two sides warmed up on the pitch prior to kick off. A grey gloomy day on Humberside where a decent coat was the order of the day.
Salford coach Paul Rowley brought Ryan Brierley back in to the team at full back and Amir Bourouh started at hooker in place of Andy Ackers who has picked a knock up. Alex Gerrard returned to start at prop with Tyler Dupree on the bench alongside Danny Addy, Morgan Escare and Ryan Lannon.
Salford should have opened the scoring when Ken Sio and Deon Cross broke away down the right edge. The duo somehow seemed to overplay the situation and the chance was gone.
The Robins came into this match on a poor run of form but with some experienced players returning to the side they got on the front foot with back to back tries. Lachlan Coote out jumped the Salford defence to score the first one then Coote backed up superbly to take Matt Parcell’s pass to double the lead. Former St.Helens fullback Coote converted both the tries to put Rovers 12-0 up after fifteen minutes.
The hosts were dominating in all departments and it took Salford over twenty minutes to venture in to their opponents twenty metre zone.
Tim Lafai knocked on deep in his own half and from the next play the Robins flung a looping pass out to Ryan Hall who charged over to score the third try.
Salford didn’t look like scoring but got a try from nothing when a desperate kick from Harvey Livett was lost by Parcell. It was difficult to see who grounded the ball but after consultation with the in goal judge referee Tom Grant awarded the try. I don’t think anyone in the ground was quite sure which Salford player got his hand on the ball to score the try. Even the match announcer kept quiet. I thought it was Salford’s number three Kallum Watkins. Marc Sneyd added the two points 18-6.
Coote could do no wrong in the first and just as the hooter sounded for half time he wisely slotted over a drop goal. 19-6.
Salford in their Royal Blue kit we’re putting in far from a Royal performance. Once again their defence was all over the show at the start of the second half and after some good work from Shaun Kenny-Dowell the Robins were in again. Ryan Hall powered over to touch down.
The Red Devils were really starting to lose their way when Tyler Dupree was sin binned and the game threatened to boil over. Both sides went for each other with some big tackles. One or two were border line dangerous and the referee had to keep a close eye on the situation.
Rovers spurred on by their supporters smelled blood and with some ferocious defence they forced a goal line drop out. Winger Ethan Ryan tore through the heart of the Salford defence to some the day up for the Red Devils. Coote again converted, 31-6.
Harvey Livett was then sin binned for what looked like dissent. Ben Crooks scored but it did look like a huge obstruction from the home side which Livett seemed to mention to the referee.
It wasn’t Salford’s day, Rovers were far superior in every department. Deon Cross bagged a try from a neat kick through in the closing stages before Crooks shot through some very ordinary Salford defence for his second try.
Joe Burgess scored the games final try but it was little consolation.
After some really encouraging performances throughout the month of May Salford were shown up by a very well organised Hull Kr side who thoroughly deserved the victory.
The Red Devils are back in action this Friday when they face the newly crowned Challenge Cup Winners Wigan.
Hull Kingston Rovers 43 Salford 16.
Big thanks to Steve McCormick for the photos