Tigers Down The Devils
Posted: Friday 13th July 2018 - 10:27 PM
Castleford Tigers continued their recent run of fine form on Friday evening, seeing off Salford Red Devils 24-6 at the AJ Bell Stadium.
All-in-all, it was a professional performance from the black and amber in a game that was a potential banana skin considering Salford’s desperation for points. Centre Jake Webster grabbed most of the headlines, scoring a brace of tries for the Tigers.
Torrential downpours in the hours leading up to kick-off dictated that conditions were always going to be tricky for the two sides, and it showed in the early going.
The Tigers struggled to gain worthwhile field position inside the opening ten minutes, as errors littered their attacking sets.
However, they eventually adapted to the slick surface better than the hosts, so unsurprisingly came up with the first try of the contest towards the end of the first quarter. It was hardly a textbook move, as the ball was kicked by Greg Eden – of all people – and ricocheted between a number of players before finding its way to a grateful Webster. As the saying goes though, they all count.
The Tigers would have hoped to have kicked on after the initial score, but Salford proved their resilience and were arguably on top in the proceeding moments. The Red Devils had more than a few assaults on the Castleford line, though it must be said their offence lacked a clinical edge.
It looked as if the Tigers were going to go into the break without conceding, but the pressure eventually told as Jake Bibby chased a smart grubber into the in-goal and beat James Clare to the ball. Ed Chamberlain converted.
The black and amber ended the half with the initiative and looked threatening, but they couldn’t add anything more to the score line before the hooter.
A stint in the changing rooms at the half was needed for the Tigers, and the re-group did wonders as they grabbed their second try of the evening shortly after re-entering the field of play.
Skipper Michael Shenton came up with it, after some quick thinking from Paul McShane utilising the short side.
From there, it was obvious to everyone that Castleford would have every opportunity to formulate a heathier lead, and they capitalised shortly after as Webster hit a line like a steam train, leaving the Salford players tasked with defending him no chance.
It was hardly a champagne performance from the Tigers, but size in the middle was proving to be the difference, much as it was last Sunday, when Leeds came to the Mend-A-Hose Jungle and were physically outmatched.
Salford showed all the resilience of a side desperate for a win late on, but the Tigers simply took the wind from their sails, one set at a time. It wasn’t necessarily pretty from the Fords, but it was certainly effective.
With the pressure building, all that was required was a final dagger to the Red Devils’ collective heart, and it came with eight minutes to play. Quentin Laulu-Togaga’e sent a floating ball out to the right edge, and Kieran Gill did the rest, diving in at the corner.
With that, the result and the two points were sealed. A job well done by the Tigers, who now sit just a single point behind Wigan on the Super League ladder, as the Super 8s approach.
Full Time: Castleford Tigers 24-6 Salford Red Devils
Eden, Gill, Webster, Shenton, Clare, Laulu-Togaga’e, Trueman, Watts, McShane, Sene-Lefao, Moors, Millington, Milner
Holmes, Wardle, Cook, Clark
Tries: Webster (2), Shenton, Gill
Conversions: McShane (4/4)
Salford Red Devils
Chamberlain, Olpherts, Sa’u, Jones, Bibby, Lui, Shorrocks, Tasi, Wood, Nakubuwai, Lannon, McCarthy, Murray
Flanagan, Burke, Mossop, Nzoungou
Conversions: Chamberlain (1/1)
*Match Report by Ross Williams
*Photo Courtesy of Melanie Allatt