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One Hull of a Fightback
Posted by southstander on June 06 2008 - 22:29:02

Record Breaker

With a resurgent Hull FC under the new stewardship of Richard Agar, and a Rhinos side still wearing the battle scars of last weekends massive encounter against the Warriors, everything was up for grabs at tonights meeting at Headingley.

Those in attendance knew that we were in for a tough game when the first ten minutes resembled one of those programmes on the Discovery Channel where they show you two trains hitting head-on from various angles and at various speeds.

No-one could have, however, predicted that we'd be in for a fixture which defines the commentators cliche 'A game of two halves'.

We bring you all of the action here......

38

Rhinos

v

Hull FC

22

Superleague XIII

Round 16

6th June 2008

One Hull of a Fightback

Bluey sprang couple of surprises on the Leeds fans. Firstly Peacock was missing, partly for the purpose of rest, partly due to him having a hole in his arm after last weeks Cup tie. Whether it was an administrative error on the teamsheet, or a Bluey tactic, we don't know. But Donald was named in the centres and Senior on the wing. They didn't line up like that but that is what the team sheet said.

The early hits were ferocious as the Rhinos defended the Carnegie Stand against a Hull onslaught.

It took nine minutes for the opening score and it went with posession and in favour of the vistors. A high kick saw Hall knocked off the ball as it descended and then a Hull player looked to knock-on before Manu pounced on the loose ball to score. Three officials managed to miss the knock-on and the score was given. Tickle goaled and Hull rightly had a 6-0 lead.

On eighteen Senior failed to collect a loose bobbling ball, instead knocking it back into Hull hands. The tackle count was wiped down but it didn't matter as Graham Horne crossed. Tickles goal took the visitors to 12-0. We looked rocked.

Four minutes later and the visitors were in again. This time Hall kicked a cross-field ball into the Leeds goal area and with Leeds deciding not to jump to collect the ball, Tickle leapt, caught and landed on his belly to score the try. He converted his own for 18-0 and we couldn't really have any complaint.
Leeds only joy of the first half came five minutes from the end of a half in which we were totally outplayed by a hungrier side who made almost no mistakes. FC knocked-on right in-front of their sticks and from the back of the scrum Leeds moved the ball left for Senior to step inside a tackler and score a ten metre try. Sinfield missed the conversion and the Rhinos trailed FC by 18-04 at the break.

A few years ago you'd have thought the game was all over, but now we have a belief in this Leeds side which is only surpassed by their self-belief. This game was recoverable, it would take some work and some luck, but we could get back into it.


Excellent

Hull FC didn't read the script and with the second half four minutes old Tickle kicked a penalty goal after Webb was adjudged to have failed to regain his feet to play the ball, inside his own twenty. Now it was 20-4, perhaps it wouldn't be the Rhinos comeback that we were hoping for. It's just a good job that the lads believe in themselves!

On forty-six the Rhinos stepped up a gear. A superb scampering run from Burrow saw him run the angle from twenty metres, avoid three attempted tackles and hit the goal area on the dive. Sinfield missed what looked like a simple conversion (by his standards) and it was 20-8. Two converted tries from levelling it.


Try of the Season
As Hull kicked the ball back to Leeds from the restart we were treated to what must be try of the season and possibly the decade. Leeds worked the kick-off back up field and Donald received the ball on his own thirty before setting off on a sensational jinking and dodging run which saw him evade five or six tackles, changes direction on three or four occasions and finally cross over in the left corner. Sinfield converted and put his name behind Lewis Jones into second place in the all-time Leeds points scoring list (surpassing Joe Thompsons 1,883 by two points). He also kept his scoring sequence going.

Leeds cause was helped five minutes later when Dykes was sin-binned for tackling a Leeds player from an offside position.

From the resulting penalty Ellis charged through the Hull defence and crashed over. Sinfield added the extras to level the scores at 20-20. It had been a sensational eight minute spell in which we'd scored sixteen points to level the game.

On fifty-eight Hull regained the lead thanks to a Tickle penalty after Sinfield interfered at the Play-the-ball, but it would be short-lived. The Rhinos were on a roll and Hull had no answer for their momentum.

On sixty-one Thaler looked to have ruled out a perfectly good try and instead gave Leeds a penalty for a high tackle. We moved the ball right before a long ball left found Donald in place to cross for his second of the game. Sinfield converted from the touchline for 26-22.

On sixty-eight Sinfield went through one of the many gaps that was starting to appear in the Hull defence and found Ellis in support to get over the whitewash and make the conversion a formality for 32-22.

The icing on the cake came on seventy when Tickles short kick-off was palmed back by a Hull player onto the Leeds forty-metre line with no Hull player anywhere near. Burrow picked up the bouncing ball and went sixty metres unopposed for his second of the game and when Sinfield added the extras to take the score to 38-22, all we had to do was absorb any remaining Hull pressure and wait for the hooter.

This was a great Leeds fightback and good team display. The first half saw a forceful Hull and a lot of Leeds mistakes but we again showed that we had the patience to grind out a win, and what in the end proved to be a comfortable victory. All round some good performances especially Bailey, Burrow and Burgess but it would be cruel to single out any one individual.

All this without Peacock, and with Senior on the wing. Maybe Bluey has a point about Scotty in the centres?


Man of the Match Poll

Points
Player%
10
Donald44%
8
Senior26%
6
Burgess21%
5
Sinfield9%

See here for season standings.


Match Facts

Rhinos
Hull FC
No.
Player
T
G
DG
No.
Player
T
G
DG
1
Webb
25
Byrne
22
Hall
2
Sing
19
Ablett
17
Horne
1
2
Donald
2
3
Yeaman
4
Senior
1
27
Briscoe
6
McGuire
4
Hall
7
Burrow
2
7
Dykes
8
Leuluai
8
Dowes
9
Diskin
20
Houghton
16
Bailey
10
Carvell
35
Anselme
16
Manu
1
12
Ellis
2
11
Radford
13
Sinfield
5
12
Tickle
1
5
17
Scruton
18
Wheeldon
21
Tansey
22
Burnett
24
Burgess
21
Dale
11
Jones-Buchanan
31
Thackray

Kick Off:
20:00
Half-Time:
04-18
Referee:
Phil Bentham
Crowd:
16,886


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