Rugby League: Morley puts the fire back into Leeds

Salford 6 Leeds 40
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The Independent Online
By Dave Hadfield

Salford 6 Leeds 40

THE RETURN of Adrian Morley, starting his first match since June, gave Leeds the strike-power that could yet see them challenge for the Super League title.

Their relative fall from grace has coincided with Morley's absence with a knee injury. Against his local club, and in combination with the equally lively Andy Hay, Morley gave them the drive that has been missing, crowning his performance with two tries.

"It's good to see Adrian back on the football field," said the Leeds coach, Graham Murray. "He's a class act and Andy Hay has been one of our best players even when, as a team, we've been disappointing. They were a pretty lethal combination today."

Leeds took an early 12-point lead by capitalising on Salford's raggedness. Iestyn Harris kicked them ahead and Morley set up Hay to go over and add the conversion.

Forber was placed on report for another tackle, this time late on Brad Godden, but Leeds concentrated on the ball, moving it across field for Hay to set up Richie Blackmore.

It looked ominous for Salford, but a dash from his own line by Darren Rogers set up an attack that eventually saw Phil Hassan score against the club from which he is still on loan.

Simon Svabic added the goal and Salford were reasonably in touch but, with Gary Broadbent in the sin bin, Harris added another penalty and Graham Holroyd crossed for Leeds' third try before half-time.

Outstanding second-row play by Morley produced the fourth 10 minutes after the break. His deft pass released Godden and he was there in support to take Marcus St Hilaire's inside ball and score.

Broadbent achieved the rare distinction of being sin-binned for a second time, again for holding on in the tackle and, from the tapped penalty, Godden scored on the left.

Hay raced over with an interception from David Hulme and Morley crashed through from Ryan Sheridan's inside pass to complete the demolition.

Salford: Broadbent, Penni, Martin, Hassan, Rogers, Kenward, Svabich, Southern, Alker, Eccles, Highton, Forber, Hulme. Substitutes: Randall, E Faimalo, J Faimalo, Alexander.

Leeds: St Hiliare, Rivett, Blackmore, Godden, Cummins, Harris, Sheridan,Masella, Newton, Fleary, Morley, Hay, Glanville. Substitutes: Holroyd, Powell, Farrell, Mathiou.

Referee: K Kirkpatrick (Warrington).

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