Salford Red Devils 38-12 Toulouse Olympique: Match report

Against the relegation favourites, Salford simply had to capitalise on the momentum generated by their brilliant 26-16 win over Castleford last week in Round One.

Against a Toulouse side hurting from a 42-14 Super League debut defeat to Huddersfield having led 10-0 in the game, the Red Devils were overwhelming favourites and went on to live up to the favourites tag and joined Warrington, Wigan, St Helens and Huddersfield on two wins from the opening two.

After enjoying a fast start last week against the Giants, it was a case of starting slow in England with Salford taking a 14-0 lead within the opening 19 minutes. Ken Sio opened the scoring within two minutes from a Marc Sneyd grubber. It was then a case of a point a minute when Sio scored a second on the back of a fantastic Brodie Croft break.

Joe Burgess then continued his strong start to 2022 when his break down the left set up a Ryan Brierley try to crown his home debut for his boyhood club. Marc Sneyd’s first conversion of the afternoon – after notching seven from seven last week – took the lead out to 14-0.

By halftime another of the home debutants had scored with Marc Sneyd skipping through the middle of the Toulouse defence to make it 20-0 as he announced himself to the Salford faithful for the second time having debuted for the club the first time over a decade ago.

Toulouse did give themselves a slither of hope just before the break when Chris Hankinson grounded a Joseph Paulo grubber and subsequently converted his own try.

It was then a case of game well and truly on when Joseph Paulo turned from provider to scorer on the back of a Tony Gigot grubber – the order of the day. That made it an 8-point ball game but a strong finish from the Red Devils ensured the two competition points would stay in Salford.

Tim Lafai became the third of the home debutants to score in the 52nd minute before Ken Sio finished the game as he started it. He scored a brace in the opening 10 and notched another in the final 10 to take his tally to four tries for the afternoon. His fourth was the pick of the bunch as he ran the length of the field on the back of an intercept.

Sneyd ended the afternoon with five goals taking Salford’s total to 38 giving them the ideal start to the 2022 season.

Teams:

Salford Red Devils: 1 Ryan Brierley, 2 Ken Sio, 4 Tom Lafai, 28 Deon Cross, 5 Joe Burgess, 6 Brodie Croft, 7 Marc Sneyd, 15 King Vuniyayawa, 9 Andy Ackers, 10 Greg Burke, 11 Shane Wright, 12 James Greenwood, 13 Elijah Taylor
Substitutes: 8 Sitaleki Akauola, 14 Danny Addy, 23 Dan Sarginson, 29 Alex Gerrard

Tries: Sio (4), Brierley, Sneyd, Lafai. Goals: Sneyd 5/7

Toulouse Olympique: 31 Tony Gigot, 25 Matty Russell, 3 Junior Vaivai, 21 Chris Hankinson, 24 Guy Armitage, 17 Joseph Paulo, 7 Lucas Albert, 18 Mitch Garbutt, 9 Lloyd White, 8 Romaine Navarrate, 16 Joe Bretherton, 11 Andrew Dixon, 19 James Cunningham
Substitutes: 13 Anthony Marion, 14 Eloi Pelissier, 15 Maxime Puech, 23 Justin Sangare

Tries: Hankinson, Paulo. Goals: Hankinson 2/2

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