Tim Lafai is one of the signings of the season.
The centre has taken to Super League like a duck to water and has devastated defences all season long even the stern defence of the Champions St Helens.
He’s been them epicentre of Salford’s explosion of attacking potential in 2022 and has been a key player in Salford’s remarkable play-off push and the journey is not over yet.
Though it certainly seemed it could be over earlier this season when the Red Devils slipped into a mid-season slump and looked out of the play-off race and speaking to us after being included in the Super League Dream Team, Lafai reflected on this and how people had somewhat written them off in terms of the play-offs: “Yeah it’s a different team from the start of the year and the back end. We started well but we went through a period where we were losing. I think we’re peaking at the right time, it is a long season. You’ve seen how easily teams can drop out the top six and back in.”
For Salford fans, their resurgence at the end of the season is very reminiscent of their 2019 road to Old Trafford, but Lafai has said that the team hasn’t spoken about that much and that they’re more focused on their own story: “It hasn’t been spoken about too much, we’re more focused on ourselves. We’re just clicking and Rowley is finding a way to get the best out of each player.”
That Grand Final appearance was of course masterminded by Ian Watson who is now striving to end Salford’s fairytale this year as his Huddersfield Giants side host the Red Devils in the first week of the play-offs.
It’s not been long since Lafai’s Salford battered the Giants live on Channel 4 but he thinks this time things could be different: “It’s finals footy, it’s definitely different especially going there, it’s going to be tough. We’ve got to be on our A game and match them toe-to-toe.”