Rugby League: Gregory the great drives Salford forward: Hull are played out of it by a one-man band

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The Independent Online
Salford. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .26

Hull. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .6

THE old adage about one man not making a team might have to be revised, because Andy Gregory has transformed Salford beyond recognition.

Gregory inspired the club who were struggling so badly when he joined them last month to the sort of first-half performance that would have swept better sides than Hull out of the Regal Trophy.

His generalship, distribution and kicking were of the highest class. More unexpected and ultimately more damaging to Hull was the way he has rediscovered his eye for a gap and the leg power to make a break himself.

The signs were there from the start that Hull were not going to be able to weather Gregory's Indian summer. In the opening minutes he was sending Bob Marsden charging upfield with a perfect pass and he was there again to start and finish the move that brought Salford's first try.

The player-coach, Garry Jack, fed the ball on to Phil Ford, who sidestepped several defenders before Gregory emphasised the new spring in his step by arriving in support to score. Gregory tormented Hull with his full array of tricks, including a lovely grubber kick that almost brought a try at the corner, before he crossed again himself.

Once more he began the move, this time with a long pass to Shaun Brown and was on hand again to take the final pass after Ford and Paul Forber had outstripped the whole defence.

Gregory made the opening from which Marsden scored Salford's third try and he was already beginning to relax and admire his handiwork by the time that Forber, who along with two Hull players spent time in the sin bin, sold a dummy for another before half-time.

Brown could manage only three goals from six attempts or Salford would have been further ahead. Without ever regaining their first- half momentum, they were never going to be overhauled in the second, especially after Chris Tauro slid over the line when tackled short on 63 minutes.

It was significant that Hull's try, from the comprehensively outshone Des Hasler, came after Gregory had retired for a well-earned bath.

Salford: Jack; Critchley, Birkett, Williams, Ford; Brown, Gregory (Blakeley, 69); Young (Marsden, 70), Lee, Marsden (Webster, 57), Forber, Tauro, Burgess.

Hull: Gay; Eastwood, R Nolan, Grant, G Nolan (Danby, 59); Doyle, Hasler; Jackson (Cassidy, 53), Dixon, Street, Divet, Wilson (G Nolan, 69), Sharp.

Referee: R Smith (Castleford).

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