The Qualifiers: Salford Red Devils 34-26 Wakefield Trinity Wildcats
|Salford (16) 34|
|Tries: J Griffin 2, G Griffin, Paterson 2, Chase Goals: J Griffin 4, Paterson|
|Wakefield (6) 26|
|Tries: Miller 2, Washbrook, Lyne Goals: L Smith 5|
Salford survived a second-half fightback from Wakefield to secure their first win of the Qualifiers.
The Red Devils led 16-6 at the break through Josh Griffin's two scores and another from his brother George.
Wakefield's Jacob Miller twice touched down before Danny Washbrook gave them the lead, with all three tries set up by former Salford scrum-half Tim Smith.
Late scores from Rangi Chase and two from Cory Paterson secured the win, after Trinity led through Reece Lyne.
Salford had already beaten the Wildcats home and away in Super League this season and had looked comfortable with a 16-point lead.
Wakefield, who finished bottom of the Super League at the end of the regular season, battled back to go ahead twice in the second half but could not hold on.
Acting Salford coach Ian Watson:
"We had early control but lost our way five minutes before half-time.
"We started giving them possession after our halves were controlling the game.
"A mistake by Rangi (Chase) gave them their first try but at the end we found a way to win.
"Rangi may have cost us a couple of tries but he came up with a great play when it mattered."
Wakefield coach Brian Smith:
"We are very disappointed because I have never seen us play better than that.
"We played against a team who were faultless apart from Ben Jones-Bishop not fielding the ball for a likely try.
"But Salford got through the first half without conceding a penalty and that is very difficult and a tall order.
"We did not finish the job off but there were things out of our control."
Salford: Jones-Bishop; J Griffin, Thornley, Sa'u, Johnson; Chase, Dobson; Taylor, Tomkins, G Griffin, Hansen, Maitua, Paterson.
Replacements: Lee, Krasniqi, Evalds, Morley.
Wakefield: L Smith; Owen, Tupou, Arundel, Lyne; Miller, T Smith; Scruton, Moore, Anderson, Molloy, Ashurst, Simon.
Replacements: Sio, Walker, Mullally, Washbrook.
Referee: James Child