O'Brien stars as Salford down Giants


Gareth O'Brien put in a man-of-the-match performance to guide Salford Red Devils to their first Super League win of the season - a 30-20 victory at Huddersfield Giants on Thursday.

Salford were beaten 26-16 by defending champions Wigan Warriors on the opening weekend but put in a determined performance to keep their hosts at bay at the John Smith's Stadium.

O'Brien kicked Salford into a 2-0 lead before Jermaine McGillvary went over on the right for a try that saw him surpass 500 points for the Giants.

Danny Brough was wayward with the conversion attempt and Salford were soon on the front foot.

Junior S'au always posed a threat and the former New Zealand international exploited a gap in the Huddersfield defence to cross for his second try of the season after 22 minutes.

O'Brien added the extras and did likewise after touching down himself within two minutes of the second half, having sent Salford in with a six-point lead at the break thanks to a late penalty.

A knee in touch denied Greg Johnson when he looked to have stretched Salford's lead further, and a quick-fire double from Alex Mellor saw Huddersfield close the gap.

Brough could only follow up one of those tries with a successful conversion, leaving the hosts two adrift, and O'Brien's second of the match helped Salford re-establish a cushion at 22-14.

Ukuma Ta'ai gave Huddersfield hope when he was awarded a try after a visit to the video referee, but Josh Jones twisted and turned his way through the defence to touch down next to the posts five minutes from time and all but seal the win.

O'Brien's kick - and a subsequent penalty - took his personal tally to 22 on a superb evening's work from Salford's star performer.