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Rugby League

Salford 36 Whitehaven 10: Myler snuffs out Whitehaven to maintain record

Three expertly taken tries from Salford's richly promising scrum-half Richard Myler ensured that the only unbeaten record in National League One was never in serious dangerous at The Willows last night.

The 17-year-old, who has had the rule run over him by Hull among others, showed his potential by striking twice in quick succession, during a first half which Whitehaven largely dominated and again in the second to snuff out any chance of a fight back.

Myler's contribution enabled Salford to bounce back from their Challenge Cup thrashing by Wakefield, although it was not as easy as the final scoreline suggests.

Whitehaven, showing improved form under their new coach Jed Stokes, with two impressive wins, also had the better of the first half-hour last night.

They went close to an opening try three times and should have been ahead by more than Carl Rudd's penalty points. But then they put themselves under pressure by handing over possession and conceding a penalty for Andy Gorski's high tackle and Myler took advantage with an angled run through an unprepared defence.

Five minutes later, Myler supported a surging break through the middle by Paul Highton to take the pass for his second try. Jordan Turner kicked both goals and then made a break that set up Malcolm Alker early in the second half. Haven were by no means finished and Craig Calvert got the try they had threatened when he dived onto Leroy Joe's kick.Myler immediately steadied the ship, however, by completing his hat-trick, again supporting a midfield break.

Stefan Ratchford chased his own high kick for the fifth Salford try before Howard Hill got one back for the Cumbrians. Salford had the last word through Mat Gardner, but Myler had been the difference between the two sides.

Salford: Fitzpatrick; Williams, Littler, Gardner, White; Paul, Myler; Leuluai, Alker, Stapleton, Sibbic, Adamson, Turner. Substitutes used: Ratchford, Jewitt, Brocklehurst, Highton.

Whitehaven: Broadbent; Calvert, R Jackson, Macisi, Adebisi; Rudd, Joe; McDonald, Sice, M Jackson, Miller, Hill, McAvoy. Substitutes used: Mattinson; Gorski; Fatialofa; Edmondson.

Referee: P Hicks (Oldham).