St Helens cruised to a comfortable 52-10 victory over Salford Red Devils in their final pre-season match ahead of the 2024 campaign.

Debutant Daryl Clark scored his first try for the club, while star man Jack Welsby warmed-up for the new season with a couple of trademark tries.

The visitors started the better of the two sides, having the first big chance of the match. A high kick to the right wing was well claimed by Kallum Watkins close to the line, but the hosts were able to wrap the ball up before Salford could ground the ball.

Saints however took an early lead after six minutes, capitalising on a Salford error. Clark tried to feed the oncoming Curtis Sironen, but the ball hit the ground and found Welsby who went over. Tommy Makinson converted to make it 6-0.

Moments later, the away side were reduced to twelve men for ten minutes as King Vuniyawa was punished for a late challenge on George Delaney.

An outstanding try from debutant Clark saw Saints extend their lead on the 16-minute mark. It was Joe Batchelor who intercepted a Salford kick and found Clark on his inside who broke away with pace before skipping past Deon Cross and sliding underneath the sticks. Makinson added the two for 12-0.

From the restart, Saints were at it again. This time it was Welsby who got his second of the match as Delaney broke the visiting line and found the scorer on his inside.

He dummied passed a Salford defender before going over to the left of the posts. Makinson converted again, 18-0.

4,058 were in attendence.
4,058 were in attendence.

The Red V found a fourth try after a Salford knock on gave the hosts a repeat set of six on the visitors’ line. The Saints were able to shift the ball from left to right with an impressive team move that ended up with Makinson going over on the right wing. However, he couldn’t convert.

The hosts continued to pile on the pressure with a good chase from Matt Whitley that earned the Saints a repeat set as he was trapped on the goal line.

The Red Devils’ afternoon continued to get worse as from the repeat set, Joe Batchelor scored Saints’ fifth try of the game after a flat kick from Moses Mbye next to the line came off a Salford foot and allowed Batchelor to leap onto it. Makinson added the extras.

Salford grabbed their first try of the match just five minutes into the second half as Tim Lafai received on off load on the edge and powered into space before.

He then fired a pass out beyond the reach of Jon Bennison and into the hands of former Saint Matty Foster who had the simple job of going over on the left side. Marc Sneyd added the kick from the wing.

Saints soon extended their lead again. This time it was Matt Whitely who dove over as Moses Mbye broke the line and passed the ball smartly inside to him. George Whitby converted from the left.

Saints’ Dayon Sambou was next to score when he raced away from a scrum near his own goal line, running the length of the field before diving over in front of the home fans.

Minutes later, Saints added another exploiting Salford’s vulnerabilities at the back as Ben Davies fed the ball into Jonny Vaughn down the left to score. Whitby added his third kick of the match to make the score 46-6.

Try number nine for the hosts came through Owen Dagnall who claimed Ben Will’s pass after Salford almost won it back before running clear to score. Whitby made it four from four and 52-6.

The last action came from the visitors who scored a well-worked try of their own after a kick went into the right channel and was well collected by the jumping Scott Egan, to score just their second try of the match.