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Salford

  • Sau, Fages, Walne,
    Goals: Griffin, Griffin (2),
18 - 22

Leeds

  • Ablett, Watkins, Hardaker, Ward,
    Goals: Hardaker (3),
  • First Utility Super League
  • 25th Jul 2014
  • KO 20:00
  • Att: 5,012

Super League: Leeds Rhinos edge out Salford Red Devils

Last updated: 25th July 2014  


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Leeds overcame the absence of Kevin Sinfield to maintain their challenge for top spot in Super League with a 22-18 success that brought Salford's three-match winning run to an end.

The Rhinos' victory keeps them just two points behind leaders St Helens but deals a major blow to the play-off hopes of the Red Devils, who are now four points behind eighth-placed Widnes with five matches left.

In addition to the suspended Sinfield, Leeds were also without forwards Brett Delaney, Ryan Bailey and Mitch Achurch through injury but their youthful bench players showed they were up to the task as they held off a strong challenge from their in-form hosts, who lost star full-back Kevin Locke with a back injury before half-time.

The absence of Sinfield paved the way for Leeds to turn back the clock by reuniting Danny McGuire and Rob Burrow in the halves and it was the scurrying Burrow who produced the first break of the match.

That came to nothing, however, and it was Salford who opened the scoring on 12 minutes when centre Junior Sa'u beat Ryan Hall to the ball after Locke had threaded it through the visitors defence to claim his 11th try of the season.

Josh Griffin's conversion made it 6-0 but Leeds struck a purple patch to go 12-6 ahead.

Full-back Zak Hardaker dived full length to ground the ball from McGuire's stabbed kick before centre Kallum Watkins finished off a spectacular 60-metre move started by hooker Paul Aiton and continued by winger Tom Briscoe.

Hardaker added both goals but the Red Devils finished the first half the stronger side, despite losing Locke five minutes before the break.

Scrum-half Theo Fages had a try disallowed for a forward pass but he was not denied shortly afterwards after winning the chase to Rangi Chase's kick to the line and Griffin tied the scores with his second conversion.

Surge

There was little to choose between the sides but another momentum shift early in the second half saw Leeds open up a 10-point advantage.

Second rower Carl Ablett twisted and turned out of a three-man tackle to score one of his trademark opportunist tries and Stevie Ward scythed through the Salford defence for another after a break by fellow substitute Liam Sutcliffe had set up field position.

Salford, too, enjoyed significant impact from the bench, with Niall Evalds slotting nicely into Locke's position and forward Jordan Walne getting his side back in the game by taking Chase's drop-off pass to score his first try of the season.

Griffin's third goal meant there was just four points in it and it stayed that way after Hardaker missed with a 40-metre penalty kick at goal.

That was the signal for the Red Devils to launch one last effort and Sa'u went on a rampaging run for the line only to lose the ball in Hardaker's tackle.

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Super League Table

Super League Table - September 14 2014
Pos Team P Pts
1 St Helens 27 38
2 Wigan Warriors 27 37
3 Huddersfield Giants 27 37
4 Castleford Tigers 27 36
5 Warrington Wolves 27 35
6 Leeds Rhinos 27 32
7 Catalans Dragons 27 29
8 Widnes Vikings 27 27
9 Hull K R 27 23
10 Salford Red Devils 27 23
11 Hull FC 27 22
12 Wakefield Wildcats 27 21
13 Bradford Bulls * 27 10
14 London Broncos 27 2
Forthcoming First Utility Super League Fixtures
TimeFixture
First Utility Super League
Thursday 5th February
20:00Widnes vs Wigan
Friday 6th February
20:00St Helens vs Catalans Dragons
Saturday 7th February
15:00Warrington Wolves vs Salford Red Devils
Sunday 8th February
15:00Huddersfield vs Hull
15:00Hull K R vs Leeds
15:30Castleford vs Wakefield
Thursday 12th February
20:00Salford vs St Helens
Friday 13th February
20:00Hull vs Warrington
20:00Leeds vs Widnes
20:00Wigan vs Huddersfield
Today's Results
TimeResult
First Utility Super League
Saturday 11th October
St Helens 14 - 6 Wigan
Friday 3rd October
Wigan 16 - 12 Warrington
Thursday 2nd October
St Helens 30 - 12 Catalans Dragons
Friday 26th September
Huddersfield 16 - 18 Catalans Dragons
Thursday 25th September
Castleford 14 - 30 Warrington
Saturday 20th September
Leeds 20 - 24 Catalans Dragons
Warrington 22 - 19 Widnes
Friday 19th September
St Helens 41 - 0 Castleford
Thursday 18th September
Wigan 57 - 4 Huddersfield

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