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Vikings hand Reds a thrashing
Hanbury the star as Vikings avenge earlier hammering
Salford suffered a blow to their hopes of a top-eight finish when they lost 46-8 at home to lowly Widnes in Friday's Super League clash.
Scrum-half Rhys Hanbury was the star of the show with two tries and eight goals for the Vikings, while Patrick Ah Van and Cameron Phelps also bagged two tries each for the rampant visitors.
Widnes, hammered 38-18 at home by Salford in February, went into the clash in confident mood after a resounding 40-10 win over Castleford and a narrow one-point defeat by St Helens.
However, the Vikings were without skipper Jon Clarke, Paddy Flynn and Shaun Briscoe although Stefan Marsh, Joe Mellor and Ah Van had all recovered from knocks.
The Reds were also buoyed by successive victories against Warrington and Hull KR and decided to delay the debut of 35-year-old assistant coach Sean Long, who was registered as a player with the club this week.
Youngster Mark Sneyd continued at scrum-half alongside Exiles star Daniel Holdsworth after Matty Smith's move to Wigan, with Sean Gleeson back in the centre.
Ashley Gibson kept his place after the late withdrawal of Joel Moon and the Reds clearly missed his power in midfield.
Widnes had an early Hep Cahill try disallowed by referee James Child for an infringement in the build-up and then Paul McShane was held up over the line.
It was a bright start by the Vikings but Salford should have scored when Hanbury lost possession and Vinnie Anderson and Holdsworth broke clear.
A niggly opening kept the officials busy with desperate Salford defence again denying Marsh when he looked a certain scorer.
Widnes were rewarded for their perseverance when John Kite's charge set up the chance for Hanbury to send Phelps bursting through Lee Jewitt's tackle after 24 minutes.
Hanbury booted the conversion and Widnes went further ahead three minutes later when Phelps' pass took a deflection from a defender before Ah Van touched down in the corner.
Hanbury kicked the goal off the touchline to make it 12-0 as Salford struggled to reproduce recent form.
The Vikings added a third try four minutes before the break when Ah Van latched on to a McShane kick to cross, with Hanbury's conversion stretching the lead to 18-0.
Hanbury then piled on the agony for Salford with a scorching burst to score, and his fourth goal made it 24-0 at the interval.
Salford were hammered 10-3 in the first-half penalty count but should have scored early in the second half before Jordan James threw away a chance after a strong burst by Iafeta Paleaasesina.
It was no surprise when McShane burrowed over from dummy half to extend the lead to 30-0.
The Vikings suffered a blow with the departure of Eamon Carroll with an arm injury but Widnes were ripping apart Salford in midfield and another Hanbury burst sent Phelps over for his second try.
Hanbury bagged his second touchdown with another sizzling effort to stretch the advantage to 40-0.
Gibson went over for Salford after 58 minutes before Danny Williams took his try tally to seven in four games to give the home fans something to cheer.
However, Danny Craven sealed the win for the Vikings by intercepting a Sneyd pass to record the eighth try six minutes from time.
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First Utility Super League Table
|5||Hull K R||0||0|
|7||Salford Red Devils||0||0|
|First Utility Super League|
|Thursday 5th February|
|20:00||Widnes vs Wigan|
|Friday 6th February|
|20:00||St Helens vs Catalans Dragons|
|Saturday 7th February|
|15:00||Warrington vs Salford|
|Sunday 8th February|
|15:00||Huddersfield vs Hull|
|15:00||Hull K R vs Leeds|
|15:30||Castleford vs Wakefield|
|Thursday 12th February|
|20:00||Salford vs St Helens|
|Friday 13th February|
|20:00||Hull vs Warrington|
|20:00||Leeds vs Widnes|
|20:00||Wigan vs Huddersfield|
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