posted on 27 May 2016

Wakefield suffered their first defeat in five games as they were beaten 38-8 by Salford Red Devils at the AJ Bell Stadium.

Having fallen behind early on, the Wildcats responded through an Anthony Tupou try midway through the first half, and had opportunities to extend their lead before the interval.

However two yellow cards within the space of five minutes proved costly for Chris Chester’s side, as Salford scored three tries in almost as many minutes after the break to all but end the game as a contest before the hour mark.

The hosts added another with fifteen minutes to play, and Ben Jones-Bishop’s try in the corner proved a mere consolation as Junior Sa’u crossed after the final hooter for the home side.

Salford opened the scoring inside the first two minutes, as winger Niall Evalds, replacing the suspended Justin Carney, touched down Michael Dobson’s grubber in the corner.

Gareth O’Brien was unable to add the extras, but Dobson looked to be through for a second Red Devils try just three minutes later, only to be hauled down by Ben Jones-Bishop short of the line.

Both sides enjoyed spells of possession inside the opponent’s final third for the next quarter of an hour, but it was Salford who looked the more threatening, and Wakefield’s defence had to be at its best to force Daniel Vidot into touch over the try line.

The Wildcats grew in confidence as he half wore on, and made their possession count just prior to the half hour mark, as Anthony Tupou took Craig Hall’s inside pass from the left hand touchline to score and bring his side level.

Trinity were reduced to 12 men just five minutes before the break when Danny Kirmond was sent to the sin bin for a deliberate trip, however they could have taken the lead soon afterwards, had Chris Annakin spotted Mickael Simon on his outside shoulder having broken the defensive line.

And the home side rubbed salt into the wound just moments later, as Ryan Lanning broke through the Wildcats defence on half-way before rounding Max Jowitt to go in under the posts, leaving O’Brien the simple task of adding the first successful conversion of the evening to extend his side’s lead to 10-4.

Ben Jones-Bishop then became the second Wakefield player to see yellow on the half time hooter, he was penalised for pulling back Evalds as he looked to chase down his own kick, but O’Brien was off target from the resultant penalty.

Kirmond returned to the field with the score still at 10-4, however Salford made their one man advantage count as two converted tries in quick succession extended their lead out to 22-10.

Mark Flanagan got the first before Lannon pounced from a cross-field kick to score his second of the game, and things went from bad to worse for Wakefield as Robert Lui dotted down under the posts for Salford’s third try in four minutes.

Trinity stemmed the flow of points temporarily, and enjoyed a spell of possession close the Salford line without reward, but Salford extended their lead further when George Gibson crashed over from close range with 15 minutes to play.

With O’Brien having left the field for a concussion test, Dobson took over the kicking duties and duly added the extras to make it 34-4.
Determined to restore some pride, the Wildcats crossed for their second try of the game as Craig Hall’s long cut-out pass put Jones-Bishop in to score his fourth try in his last three games.

Finn was unable to add the touchline conversion, and Salford sealed the 38-8 win when Junior Sa’u crossed close to the right hand touchline after the final hooter had sounded.


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