London Broncos fell to their first Super League defeat of the season on Sunday 10th of February at the hands of a resurgent Salford Red Devils at the AJ Bell Stadium.
The Capital side arrived with the memory of their opening day win over Wakefield Trinity fresh in their minds and were looking to extend their winning run that stretched back to September and their previous win over the Salford side in the 11-8 win at Trailfinders.
The first half became a battle within the first twenty minutes with neither side prepared to give way. It was a real arm-wrestle with both sets of forwards testing each other to the max. Salford edged the possession but a fantastic display of defending from the visitors kept the early season form side to a solitary try scored by Ken Sio following a looped offload from Jones.
The Broncos continued throughout the first half to impress with their defence but attacking chances were coming few and far between. and within two minutes of the restart Salford had extended their lead when a kick from Evalds ricocheted back off the post protector and into the arms of Jackson Hastings for the try under the posts.
London continued to apply pressure to the Salford line, but the home side were resolute in defence and when a penalty was given against Pelissier in front of the post Hastings took the two points on offer to extend the lead.
With ten minutes remaining, Evalds found an opening in the Broncos defence and jinked his way through for another Salford try. Hastings , who did not miss a kick all afternoon added the extras.
Salford were reduced to twelve men with five minutes to play as Lee Mossop was sent to the sin-bin for an off the ball incident with new signing Greg Richards.
London, however could not capitalise on the man advantage and when Jones went over in the last minute the game was done and the two points stayed in Salford despite the many positives that London will take from the performance.
Head Coach Danny Ward said, ” Credit to Salford in that first half as they had some great goal line D. They were outstanding in completing their sets forcing us over the line and holding us out and I think that may have sapped us a little bit. To go in only six down at half time we gave the boys a big rap for that but we are disappointed on the whole.”
The Capital side now move onto another away game next week at the KCom Craven Park Stadium and Hull Kingston Rovers.
Salford Red Devils: Evalds, Olpherts, Welham, Sa’u, Sio; Lui, Hastings; Mossop, Lussick, Dudson, Jones, Turgut, Flanagan.
Interchanges: Burke, Nakubuwai, Griffin, Tomkins. (All Used)
London Broncos: Walker, Dixon, Morgan, Kear, Williams; Abdull, Cunningham; Mason, Fozard, Richards, Pitts, Gee, Yates.
Interchanges: Battye, Ioane, Lovell, Pelissier. (All Used)
Salford Tries: Sio (20’), Hastings (42’), Evalds (70’), Jones (79’)
Salford Goals: Hastings (21’, 43’, 55’, 71’
London Tries: N/A.
London Goals: N/A.
Salford sin-bin: Mossop (75′)
Referee: James Child.