Super League: Salford Red Devils 46-18 Bradford Bulls

Rangi Chase
Rangi Chase scored 22 points to earn Salford victory

Rangi Chase scored 22 points as Salford secured their first league win since April against struggling Bradford.

The hosts stormed into a 24-0 lead as Logan Tomkins, Junior Sa'u, Andrew Dixon and Chase all crossed.

Elliot Kear got the Bulls off the mark and Tom Olbison added another, but Chase and Sa'u's second tries made it 34-12 to the Red Devils at the break.

Adam O'Brien's score cut the deficit before Francis Meli and Niall Evalds put the result beyond doubt.

Their first win in eight games moved 11th-placed Salford further away from relegation danger, but Bradford look doomed for the drop.

After failing to win the appeal against their points deduction, and with Wakefield beating bottom club London Broncos on Friday, the Bulls are now eight points adrift of the Wildcats with just 11 games left.

And the manner of their first-half capitulation against Red Devils, who had England stand-off Chase to thank for their biggest score of the season, may have a demoralising effect.

It was Tomkins who opened Salford's account after only two minutes, forcing his way over from close range, with Chase landing the first of seven conversions.

Gareth Hock and Evalds then combined to send over Sa'u, before Chase regathered his own chip over the visitors' defence to create a score for Dixon.

Bradford fell further behind when a Chase dummy carved them open and he sprinted 50 metres for a solo try.

The Bulls stemmed the tide when former Salford full-back Lee Gaskell linked up with with Adrian Purtell to get winger Kear over for their first try, but his failure to take Chase's high kick moments later gifted the Kiwi a second score.

Sa'u then had a touchdown disallowed for a forward pass, but soon he pounced on a handling error by Adam Sidlow to romp 40 metres for his second.

Chase's fifth goal extended his side's lead to 34-6 before Bradford added a second on the stroke of half-time through Olbison, with Luke Gale kicking a second conversion.

The Bulls were much improved after the break and replacement hooker O'Brien went over from dummy half for a third try, but they were unable to keep up the pressure.

Sa'u continued to impress, despite an injury scare, and created further tries for winger Meli and Evalds, with the reliable Chase adding the extras

Touch judge Robert Hicks took over as referee for the last quarter of the game after George Stokes was taken ill.

Salford coach Iestyn Harris: "We've been showing some signs for the last few weeks. It's been coming but in stops and starts.

"We were pretty clinical in the early stages. I thought we had a lot of energy and worked extremely hard for each other.

"We're trying to improve as a team and get in position where can have a shot at the top eight. It's a real target for us."

Bradford coach Francis Cummins: "It was a horror start. Defensively we were pathetic. We were not even doing the basics.

"Salford played well and they have some good players who can unlock defences but they were going through untouched through the middle and that's poor.

"Right from the start we had some people who were way off the pace. We got back into it a little - we didn't have ball for 10 minutes at the start - but we had used a lot of energy.

"We had some people who were way well below any kind of standard for Super League today."

Sunday's line-ups

Salford: Evalds, Johnson, Walton, Sa'u, Meli, Chase, Fages, Griffin, Tomkins, Tasi, Dixon, Hock, J. Walne.

Replacements: Morley for Griffin (24), Lee for Tomkins (28), Puletua for Tasi (25), Rapira for J. Walne (26).

Bradford: Gaskell, Kear, Purtell, Henry, George, Addy, Gale, Manuokafoa, Diskin, Walker, Blythe, Olbison, Donaldson.

Replacements: Fakir for Manuokafoa (20), O'Brien for Diskin (34), Sidlow for Walker (18), Baldwinson for Donaldson (30).

Att: 3,407

Ref: George Stokes (RFL).

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