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20th August 2000: Salford 18 Wigan 30

Salford City Reds v Wigan Warriors - Tetley's Super League V Round 24
Sunday 20th August 2000. Kick Off 12noon at The Willows

Wigan Warriors returned to the top of the Tetley's Bitter Super League but were given a fright by impressive Salford.

Wigan swept into an early 12-0 lead but battling Salford hit back superbly.

Tony Smith opened Wigan's account, racing clear from dummy- half after only four minutes, with Andy Farrell tagging on the conversion.

Then Neil Cowie's charging run set up the chance for Farrell to put Mick Cassidy over for another converted try.

Reds full-back Gary Broadbent was forced to make a try saving tackle on David Hodgson, but Salford rallied with their best show for weeks.

Kris Radlinski, the Wigan full-back, was called on to make two last ditch tackles on Jon Roper and Gary Broadbent.

Salford deservedly notched their opening try in the 36th minute when the outstanding Broadbent took Paul Southern's pass to go over.

Jon Roper, making his debut on loan from Warrington, took over the goal kicking when Steve Blakeley limped off and added the conversion to cut the gap to 12-6 at the break.

Andy Farrell's skills set up two tries in the opening eight minutes of the second half, with his chip ahead collected by Radlinski and the full-back again going over in the 50th minute. Two Farrell conversions increased the lead to 24-6.

But Salford refused to throw in the towel and gave Wigan anxious moments when they clawed back to 24-18.

Gary Broadbent side-stepped Dennis Betts for a try in the 57th minute, with Darren Brown and Martin Offiah then combining for Jason Nicol to go over.

Roper added both goals, and Wigan faced a worrying last 10 minutes before Farrell waltzed through a rare gap in the Reds defence two minutes from time and added his fifth conversion from five attempts.

Wigan boss Frank Endacott paid tribute to Salford after his side's 30-18 win at the Willows.

Endacott said: "Salford made us work very hard for both points.

"They stretched our defence regularly and I was concerned with 10 minutes to go after Salford came back strongly.

"A few cracks showed in our defence but we will be back to our best against Bradford next week."

Salford coach John Harvey admitted: "It was a great effort by my players and to get to the stage where Wigan were worrying about the result with five minutes to go was very praiseworthy.

"We played with plenty of heart and if we perform like that against St Helens next week we could surprise them as well.

"The performance will do our confidence plenty of good."

Salford 18 - Wigan 30
Gary Broadbent
Nick Pinkney
Kris Tassell
Jason Webber
Martin Offiah
Steve Blakeley
Graham Holroyd
Neil Baynes
Malcolm Alker
Paul Southern
Jason Nicol
Darren Brown
Mike Wainwright

Jon Roper
Paul Highton
Brad Hepi
James Smith

Kris Radlinski
Dave Hodgson
Gary Connolly
Steve Renouf
Jason Robinson
Andy Farrell
Tony Smith
Terry O'Connor
Terry Newton
Neil Cowie
Mick Cassidy
Denis Betts
Lee Gilmour

Chris Chester
Mark Smith
Brady Malam
Tony Mestrov
Gary Broadbent (2)
Jason Nicol
Tries Tony Smith
Mick Cassidy
Kris Radlinski (2)
Andy Farrell
Jon Roper (3)
Goals Andy Farrell (5)
  Field Goals  

Other Information

Attendance: 4,707
Referee: Ian Smith

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