Robson stars for Tigers

Published: Sunday 26th April 2015 by The News Editor

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Teenager Ash Robson enjoyed a debut to remember by scoring Castleford’s matching-winning try to see off a depleted Salford in Sunday’s solitary First Utility Super League match.

The Red Devils, missing 12 first-teamers through injury or suspension, had led 10-0 and were still in contention at 16-10 when Robson went over for the all-important score that wrapped up a hard-fought 22-20 victory for the Tigers at the AJ Bell Stadium.

Castleford’s former Salford centre Ashley Gibson scored two tries against his old club while New Zealand international Kevin Locke touched down twice in an impressive display for the Red Devils.

The odds were stacked against Salford from the start after they were forced to go into the game without four players through suspension and another eight because of injury.

In addition, Locke and scrum-half T heo Fages both needed running repairs in a first half that saw hooker Liam Hood and prop Adrian Morley go off with arm and ankle injuries.

The glut of injuries even extended to referee George Stokes, who appeared to pull a hamstring seven minutes from the end and was replaced by reserve official Chris Leatherbarrow.

Salford, who gave debuts to loan signings James Greenwood and a particularly impressive Oliver Gildart, overcame their adversity to outplay their visitors for long periods but the Tigers did just to complete the double over their opponents.

Salford were good value for their early 10-0 lead, although both tries owed much to defensive errors by full-back Jordan Tansey.

His knock-on inside his own 10-metre area after only four minutes created the position for Fages to open the scoring while Locke collected a lucky rebound off the full-back to touch down for Salford’s second try midway through the first half.

Locke converted his own try but the visitors tightened their defence and gradually clawed their way back into the contest.

Gibson took hooker Adam Milner’s neat pass to score his first try on 25 minutes and the returning Luke Gale added the goal to cut the gap to just four points.

Salford winger Greg Johnson saved a certain try by holding up Castleford captain Michael Shenton over the line and Red Devils prop Scott Taylor also got over the line at the other end without being able to ground the ball.

Gibson gathered Shenton’s clever crossfield kick to grab his second try 30 seconds before the break to tie the scores and the Tigers hit the front for the first time six minutes into the second half.

Gale got loose forward Nathan Massey charging onto his inside pass and he slipped the attempted tackle of Lama Tasi to score his side’s third try, which Gale goaled to make it 16-10.

However, Salford continued to play with plenty of spirit and Gildart, who had gone close to touching down Locke’s grubber kick, came up with a superb 60-metre break to give his new team renewed hope.

That looked to have been extinguished when Robson followed up a speculative kick from stand-off Ben Roberts to score the Tigers’ fourth try on 63 minutes, with Gale’s third goal extending their lead to 22-10.

But Gildart raced clear to get Locke over for his second try just three minutes later and Taylor went over two minutes from the end for the home side’s fourth try.

Johnson converted the try to cut the deficit to just two points but there was no time to complete the late comeback.

Published: Sunday 26th April 2015 by The News Editor

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