Danny Buderus appears to have made a Lazarus like recovery as he's back in the Rhinos squad weeks ahead of original predictions. It could, of course, be a bluff to confuse the Giants coaching staff. But after last weeks well below par performance at Craven Park he would be most welcome.
Ali and Kylie are also massively positive inclusions for the Rhinos and Rhinos fans will have everything crossed that they will make the seventeen in what is looking like one of the most crucial games of the season so far. Leeds will be lining up in Blue & Pink for a one off game in memory of John Holmes and to highlight issues of mens health. The Leeds ninteen is; Donald, Delaney, Senior, Hall, McGuire, Burrow, Leuluai, Buderus, Peacock, Jones-Buchanan, Lauitiiti, Sinfield, Bailey, Kirke, Ablett, Burgess, McShane, Clarkson, and Smith.
The Giants have only managed three wins in their last ten games and are on the 'bad game' or a 'good game, bad game' cycle after last weeks 30-12 win over the Crusaders. Trailing the Rhinos by two league points the Giants need a 101 point victory to leapfrog the Rhinos.
A massive loss to Browns side is Brett Hodgson who picked up a shoulder injury last week. They do welcome back Finnigan and Aspinwall makes his frist appearance for a couple of months. The nineteen is; Cudjoe, D. Hodgson, Brown, Robinson, Crabtree, Lunt, Gilmour, Wild, Finnigan, D. Griffin, Drew, Lawrence, Faiumu, Grix, Aspinwall, Patrick, McGillvary, Horne, and Brough.
Nathan Brown, after announcing his departure at the end of the season, has now decided to stay at the Galpharm and the freefall which the Giants were suffering a few weeks ago seems to have halted.
Three Giants to watch;
Last week we gifted the Robins their first double over Leeds since the 1980's and if all goes disasterously tonight we'll give Huddersfield their first double for fifty-one years. The Giants last ten games have been LLLLWLWLDLW, not exactly awe inspiring, but they did beat us 20-26 in round six of this seasons competition on a day where we squandered chances.
Leeds won 20-12 at Headingley last season in doing the double, an d by 46-08 in doing the double in double in 2008.
This is the ninteenth meeting between the sides in the Superleague era with the Rhinos having won sixteen of the eighteen match-ups played since 1996.
With fifth against sixth both sides know how massive this game will be in deciding final league positions. A win and we're probably safe in at least fifth, a loss and it is game on and a nervous run in to the end of the season. At the moment we seem to be able to beat sides above us, but not those below, an attitude that we need to change today.
Any rain is forecast to clear in the late afternoon giving a calmer night on what will, by then, be a slick pitch. It could be perfect for fast, open rugby.
The Predicitions Prize Money thread is still open but if you've not predicted yet you've missed out on any points from last nights Hull derby.
See you there and enjoy the game.