Leeds Rhinos v Salford Red Devils: All you need to know ahead of big Super League showdown
Leeds Rhinos will play in front of a five-figure crowd for the first time in 16 months when Salford Red Devils visit Emerald Headingley on Friday.
Here all the essential information about the big game.
Fixture: Leeds Rhinos v Salford Red Devils
Competition: Betfred Super League round 15.
At: Emerald Headingley
On: Friday, July 23
Coverage: Not televised.
Tickets: The stadium will be fully open with no reduced capacity.
Pre-match entertainment: The returen of 'Opera Man' John Innes.
Salford coach: Richard Marshall was appointed last December, succeeding Ian Watson. The 45-year-old played as a forward for clubs including Halifax, Huddersfield Giants, London Broncos and Leigh Centurions. He impressed during a five-year stint as Halifax team boss and was assistant-coach at St Helens when they won the 2019 and 2019 Super League Grand Finals. He took over in that role from Sean Long, who is now on Rhinos’ backroom staff.
Salford star man: French full-back Morgan Escare had a fine game when the sides met last month, scoring one of Salford’s two tries. He has pace and skill and will test Leeds’ defence.
Key battle: Salford’s Lee Mossop’s was sent off for laying out Konrad Hurrell with one punch in the stormy meeting four weeks ago. He is now available following a two-match ban, which will make things interesting if he and the Leeds centre come within range this time.
Salford form: Salford’s last defeat was 38-12 at home to Rhinos three weeks ago. After a layoff because of Covid, they returned with a 70-18 win at Castleford Tigers and beat Wakefield Trinity 24-14 last weekend. They are ninth in the table, with four wins from 13 matches.
Previous meeting: June 27, 2021. Super League round 11. Salford 12 (Tries Atkins, Escare. Goals Atkin, Patton), Rhinos 38 (Tries Myler 2, Broadbent 2, T Briscoe, Gale, Leeming. Goals Martin 5). Referee: Robert Hicks.
Last five results (most recent first): Rhinos LLWWW; Salford WWLWL
Super League head to head: Salford won five, Leeds won 44. Salford’s highest score and widest margin was 38-22 at home in 2018; Leeds’ highest score and widest margin was 70-6 at home in 2015.
Milerstones: Rhinos' Luke Gale needs one appearance to reach 250 in Super League. Salford;s Ryan Lannon needs one appearance for 100 for his career and teammate Rhys Willliams' next game in Super League will be his 100th. Krisnan Inu is 15 points short of 500 in Super League.
Connections: Salford half-back Tui Lolohea and prop Jack Ormondroyd are former Leeds players. Rhinos' Richie Myler had a spell at Salford.
Rhinos injuries: Jack Walker (foot), Rob Lui (hamstring), Zane Tetevano (Achilles/Covid), Alex Walker (knee), Jack Broadbednt (ankle)
Unavailable due to Covid: Morgan Gannon.
Suspended: Bodene Thompson (second game of three).
Rhinos team news: Ash Handley, Mikolaj Oledzki, Rhyse Martin and King Vuniyayawa are all included in Leeds' initial 21, along with the players who lost at Catalans Dragons last week. Handley and Oledzki - who has also been struggling with a foot injury - have both completed a spell in isolation after a family member tested positive for coronavirus. Martin is available following a one-game ban and Vuniyayawa was unable to travel to France because of a visa issue.
Salford team news: Salford will recall captain Lee Mossop and fellow forward Jack Wells, who have both completed a two-match ban imposed following last month’s home defeat by Rhinos. Dan Sarginson is also back in contention, along with Joe Burgess and Ata Hingano. Josh Johnson drops out from the side which beat Wakefield Trinity 24-14 a week ago.
Leeds Rhinos: from T Briscoe, Newman, Hurrell, Handley, Gale, Oledzki, Leeming, Prior, Mellor, Martin, Dwyer, L Sutcliffe, Myler, Smith, Holroyd, Vuniyayawa, Walters, McLelland, L Briscoe, Donaldson, O’Connor.
Salford Red Devils: from Escare, Sio, Inu, Burgess, Lolohea, Mossop, Ackers, Ikahihifo, Lannon, Pauli, Roberts, Burke, Atkin, Livett, Williams, Sarginson, Costello, Ormondroyd, Wells, Luckley, Hingano.
Referee: Ben Thaler (Wakefield).
Last game: Catalans Dragons 27 Leeds Rhinos 18, Salford Red Devils 24 Wakefield Trinity 14 (both July 16).
Next game: Hull v Leeds Rhinos; Salford Red Devils v Wakefield Trinity (both Thursday, July 1, 7.45pm, Super League round 12).
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