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Rock Bottom Rhinos
Posted by southstander on April 09 2012 - 09:56:33

Sleepless Nights
Morale in the Rhinos camp must be reaching rock bottom with three back-to-back losses culminating with Fridays farce at Odsal.

The Rhinos have the worst recent form of any Superleague side with even Widnes, Wakefield, Salford and London managing to get at least one win in their last three games.

The weather is typical for a bank holiday, and we are playing the supporter-less London Broncos at Headingley. Does rugby league get any less appealing?

We preview the game, read more here...

The Rhinos will be relieved that Jamie Peacock has been cleared to play after that shocking spear tackle from Hargreaves on friday night. It just seems to get worse every time you see it on the TV and Peacock is very fortunate to not be suffering any long-term ill effects of what could have been a career ending tackle. If this weeks disciplinary doesn't bring a long ban then there is no justice from the judiciary.

Liam Hood and Danny McGuire are both named in the ninteen, as they were for Bradford. Hopefully this time they will get a game.

Plenty of those players who took part on friday will have spent a sleepless weekend agonising over what went wrong, and hopefully that 'naval gazing' will have left them determined to set the record straight today with a big win over the side who are equal bottom of the league. Anything else and the top sides may have already opened up an uncloseable gap.

Big Mac's nineteen is exactly the same as Friday; Webb, Jones-Bishop, Watkins, Hardaker, Hall, McGuire, Leuluai, McShane, Peacock, Ablett, Sinfield, L. Smith, Delaney, Bailey, Kirke, Clarkson, Griffin, Hood, and Ward. Assuming McGuire is fit today I'd expect to see Smith and Ward as the two to miss out. Don't be surprised if McDermott gives Peacock another few days to get over being dropped on his head.

Rob Powell has his own problems with team selection and the latest casualty is Rinaldi with an ankle ligament injury. He is also without Golden, Howell and Melling, all sitting on the sidelines with injuries. He has been forced to draft in Lamont Bryan, Omari Caro and Olsi Krasniqi for the trip north.

The nineteen names on the Broncos teamsheet are; Bailey, Bryan, Bryant, Caro, Clubb, Colbon, Cook, Dixon, Dorn, Gower, Kaufusi, Krasniqi, O'Callaghan, Randall, Robertson, Rodney, Sarginson, Temata, and Witt.

Three Broncos to keep an eye on;


Sargison

Witt

Dorn

Leeds have been here before, as recently as last season, when we lost three on the bounce between the 24th June and 10th July against the Bulls, Warriors and Dragons. We then bounced back with an unconvincing 20-0 win over Hull FC.

The Broncos have only picked up two wins so far this season, both of those within the last five games with a nilling of fellow strugglers Wakefield and a 42-16 home win over the Castleford Tigers.

The Broncos (as Harlequins) did the double over us last season with a ten point victory at Headingley in February followed up with the same margin win in August.

It will be no walkover this afternoon.

Southstander.com Prediction
Rhinos 36 12 Broncos

The bookies have given the Broncos a twenty point start on the coupon and that should be pretty fair. However, a lot will depend on whether the boys have got over the embarrassment of Friday night. A fourth consecutive loss is something we've not suffered the ignimony of since July/August 2006 when we lost five on the bounce to; Tigers, Saints, Giants, FC and the Warriors.

According to the forecast there is a chance that the rain will ease off a little as we head for kick-off, but there is still a high chance that you'll get wet.

We need to get out of this rutt ahead of the cup game against the Wildcats next week, so get yourself to Headingley and cheer on the lads.

See you there.

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