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Leeds to Halt French Flourish
Posted by southstander on July 08 2011 - 15:11:22

Top 4 Goal
While the Rhinos have been in freefall through what is becoming an increasingly disappointing season, the Dragons have won five out of their last six and quietly snuck themselves into fifth spot in Superleague.

With the Tigers and Hull FC both playing lowly opposition over the weekend there is the chance that we'll kick-off sunday afternoons game outside the top eight!

We preview the game, read more here...

The Rhinos are without Rob Burrow, the latest victim of the Red Hall anti-Rhinos conspiracy which has seen suspension after suspension throughout 2011. The absence of the pocket rocket will surely open the door for our man Paul McShane to get back into the seventeen after missing out on last weeks trip to the DW Stadium. Weller Hauraki is now back from suspension but may not figure in the plans of the increasingly embattled Brian McDermott.

Jay Pitts is also in the ninteen that travel to France but Zak Hardaker misses out after picking up an ankle knock in the defeat at Wigan. The nineteen that we'll be depending on are; Webb, Hall, Delaney, Smith, McGuire, Leuluai, Buderus, Peacock, Jones-Buchanan, Ablett, Sinfield, Lauiti'iti, Bailey, Kirke, Hauraki, Clarkson, Pitts, Jones-Bishop, and McShane. The home side are also without a player through suspension and that is David Ferriol who missed most of the second half last week following dismissal at Bradford.

Coach Robinson appears to be doing something very right with his side and he names a nineteen of; Greenshields, Blanch, Dureau, Henderson, Casty, Menzies, Raguin, Mounis, Baile, Gossard, Millard, Vaccari, Simon, Fakir, Paea, Baitieri, Pelissier, Marginet, and Ancely. A good mix of French and antipodeans.

Three Dragons to keep an eye on;


Dureau

Fakir

Greenshields

Leeds ended up with a comfortable 30-06 win at Headingley earlier in the season thanks to a Hardaker brace, but it wasn't without a struggle. The Dragons have definitely improved their game since then with a notable scalp in the form of Wigan.

Leeds won both fixtures comfortably last season with a 52-6 win at Headingley following a 34-24 win in Perpignan earlier in the season.

The Dragonsdo have a couple of victories (in twelve meetings), the most recent being in France in June 2009 when they beat us 32-30.

Southstander.com Prediction
Dragons 20 24 Rhinos

At the time of writing this game sees fifth take on sixth in what should be an absolute corker in the south of France.

The Rhinos are due a win and if we can put in a performance like we did last weekend then we can surely overcome the Dragons and get within two points of their fifth spot. I wish I was going to support the lads but on this occasion I can't make it.

The weather in France looks considerably better than it does in Leeds with temperatures in the high twenties and absolutely no chance of any rain. At least it means that those of us stuck back in the UK watching the game on SKY shouldn't have disrupted pictures like the time that SKY covered a game in Perpignan in a thunderstorm.

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