Salford Red Devils vs Castleford Tigers Preview

11th Aug 2017 by TSZ

The Lowdown

SALFORD RED DEVILS

  • Salford's poor run of form continued as they lost in their opening Super 8s game to Hull FC last weekend. The Red Devils were level at the break but could only muster a solitary try in the second half as Hull ran out comfortable winners.      
  • Ian Watson has dropped Kris Welham and Josh Wood from his 19-man squad with Ryan Lannon receiving a recall along with the fit-again Kriss Brining.  
  • Salford have now lost seven out of their last eight Super League games and now face the league leaders in an important game with a loss here meaning they will end the weekend outside of the top four.  

Head Coach: Ian Watson

Squad: Jake Bibby, Kriss Brining, Todd Carney, Niall Evalds, George Griffin, Weller Hauraki, Greg Johnson, Josh Jones, Craig Kopczak, Olsi Krasniqi, Ryan Lannon, Rob Lui, Tyrone McCarthy, Ben Murdoch-Masila, Dan Murray, Gareth O'Brien, Logan Tomkins, Manu Vatuvei, Adam Walne 

Unavailable: Lama Tasi (Knee), Mark Flanagan (Shoulder), Lee Mossop (Injured), Michael Dobson (Injured), Junior Sa'u (Injured), Kris Welham, Josh Wood, Jordan Walne

CASTLEFORD TIGERS

  • Castleford lost for the first time in 13 Super League matches as St. Helens, produced a solid defensive display to restrict the free-scoring league leaders to just 12 points in their encounter last week.    
  • Daryl Powell has made two changes to his 19-man squad with Jake Webster and Gadwin Springer returning to the fold with Andy Lynch and Larne Patrick the men to make way.   
  • Despite the loss, Castleford's lead at the top of the table is eight points and they're still set to clinch the League Leaders' Shield in the not too distant future.      

Head Coach: Daryl Powell

Squad: Matt Cook, Alex Foster, Luke Gale, Zak Hardaker, Jy Hitchcox, Oliver Holmes, Tom Holmes, Nathan Massey, Mike McMeeken, Paul McShane, Grant Millington, Adam Milner, Greg Minikin, Joel Monaghan, Ben Roberts, Jesse Sene-Lefao, Michael Shenton, Gadwin Springer, Jake Webster

Unavailable: Kevin Larroyer (Suspended), Junior Moors (Knee), Greg Eden (Shoulder), Andy Lynch, Larne Patrick

Analysis - what to expect
Salford's Super 8s campaign didn't get off to the best of starts last week as they failed to bounce back from their Challenge Cup semi-final exit with a win, and they now face a Castleford side who will be looking for a response of their own. The Tigers are the Super League's top scorers away from home with an average of 26.8 points per game, as well as having the meanest defence away from home too, conceding just 16.3 points on average. Those are stats that Salford won't want to hear as they hunt just their second league win in nine games after their mid-season slump showed few signs of turning in the second half at Hull last week. Salford's grip on a top four place looks under threat and may look even bleaker if Castleford get back on track here.

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