O'Brien's golden-point drop goal saves Salford and relegates Hull KR


Gareth O'Brien kicked a monster drop goal in golden point as Salford Red Devils completed a remarkable turnaround to retain their Super League status and relegate Hull KR with a 19-18 victory.

Trailing 18-10 with two minutes left in the "£1million game" at Craven Park, all seemed lost for Salford until unconverted scores from Niall Evalds and Greg Johnson - the latter right on the hooter - levelled it up,

Had O'Brien added the extras to either score Salford would have won in normal time but the stand-off more than made up for it by landing a drop goal from almost halfway in the first minute of golden point to spark scenes of Salford jubilation and despair for Rovers.

There was added spice, if any was needed, heading into the fixture with Salford director of rugby Tim Sheens set to move to Rovers ahead of next season, although he departed his post before this match in a bid to remain impartial.

He will have been impressed with the start made by his new side as Rovers dominated the opening 15 minutes and moved 10-0 ahead thanks to scores from Adam Walker and Josh Mantellato.

Salford lost top try-scorer Junior Sa'u to a chest injury following a thumping tackle from Dane Tilse, but they coped well in his absence and drew level courtesy of Ben Murdoch-Masila and Evalds.

A Mantellato penalty gave Rovers a narrow half-time lead, which was extended midway through the second period when Thomas Minns touched down a grubber kick.

The contest appeared to be slipping away from Salford, but Evalds and Johnson scored in quick succession prior to O'Brien's dramatic intervention in extra time, although there were unsavoury scenes afterwards as fans clashed on the field.