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Rhinos Win in a Quagmire
Posted by southstander on July 06 2012 - 23:32:20

9 Points
It was sixth against seventh, with fifth (at least until Sunday), the prize for the victors.

The Rhinos were resting Jamie Jones-Buchanan but fellow England star Rob Burrow was a last minute replacement in the seventeen for Weller Hauraki. Looking to make it four consecutive wins they were up against a makeshift side from injury struck Hull. Gentle had drafted in retiree Radford and gave a start to Ryan McGoldrick who had only signed from Castleford earlier in the day. The Red Hall fax machine must have been working overtime.

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

21

Rhinos

v

FC

06

Superleague XVII - Round 20

6th July 2012

Rhinos Win in Quagmire

Conditions undefoot were appalling. Both wings were bogs and the twenty metres at either end of the field were close to unplayable. It was clear that this would be no spectacle, but SKY has power, and the game must go on. Only just over thirteen thousand hardy souls braved the biblical storms and made it to Headingley.

The opening exchanges was fairly even, possibly with the visitors slightly shading field position. Five tackles and a kick were the order of the day with defences holding firm until FC were the first to crack.

A kick on the last was brilliantly charged down by Bailey who managed to win the race to the loose ball and dive on it. From the play Leeds went close but were stopped just short before a fast play-the-ball found Lunt at acting half who put a short ball to Ablett to spin round the defender and dive next to the line. Sinfield kicked the extras, in front of the away supporters, for a 6-0 lead.


Opener
On twenty the Rhinos doubled their lead thanks to a bit of good fortune and poor refereeing from Tim Roby.

The hapless referee (who's Mum, I hope, deleted the game before he gets chance to re-live his nightmare) awarded leeds a penalty after wrongly judging a Hull offload after the tackle was complete. Leeds used the ball well, probing the FC line, before Delaney managed to crawl out of a tackle and stretch to ground the ball. Sinfield goaled for 12-0, and he added a penalty just before half-time, again after a Hull player was penalised for offloading after the tackle (this time correctly).

Leeds went into the dressing rooms with a deserved 14-0 lead, and all was well with the SouthStanders.

It had been a good first half. Defensively we'd been almost flawless and in attack we'd shown some of the grit and determination which had been so absent for the last couple of months. All we wanted was more of the same for the second forty, but we weren't to get it.

The half started brightly enough and it took just five minutes for us to extend the lead to 20-0 thanks to an excellent passing move down the left wing which saw Ablett put Hall over in space to dive in at the corner. Sinfield goal from the touchline, on a very soggy part of the field, was fantastic. The game was almost in the bag, and thoughts were turning to the possibility of home nilling.

But then we switched off, as did Hull, and the referee went from bad to worse. We then had one of the worst thirty-five minutes of rugby that I have ever had the misfortune to witness at HQ.


Scoring Return

Drop followed drop, penalty followed penalty, and forward pass followed forward pass. It was dire.

Hull threw themselves a lifeline on fifty-four after a Horne grubber was fumbled awfully by Ben Jones-Bishop and the chasing Horne was the first to react. Westerman added the extras but in the ten minute Hull surge that followed they never really looked like troubling the Leeds line again.

The 'highlight' of the last twenty-five minutes was a Sinfield 20m drop goal on seventy-six, but he only opted for this because it was patently obvious that we were never going to get over the whitewash again, even if we'd played on for an extra hour.

It was two points, and fifth spot, but after a promising first half the second was a massive disappointment. The conditions weren't great, but both teams played to them in the first half.

Sinfield had a stormer, kicking us out of trouble whenever needed. Delaney looked sharp, as did Ablett, and I am increasingly convinced that Hardaker is the answer to our 2013 full-back problems. Stevie Ward and Richard Moore stood up and were counted in the forwards but Peacock looked off his game and Bailey was his usual self freely dishing out penalties.

A first half to remember and a second to forget, but at least we go to the Galpharm for next saturdays semi-final on the back of four wins, which is more than Wigan can claim.

Please vote for your Man-of-the-Match in the front page poll.


Match Facts

Rhinos
FC
No.
Player
T
G
DG
No.
Player
T
G
DG
4
Hardaker
38
McGoldrick
2
Jones-Bishop
23
Crooks
3
Watkins
19
Turner
12
Ablett
1
4
Yeaman
5
Hall
1
5
Briscoe
13
Sinfield
4
1
6
Horne
1
6
McGuire
7
Seymour
10
Peacock
10
Lynch
31
Lunt
14
Heremaia
20
Griffin
37
Watts
25
Ward
13
Westerman
1
15
Delaney
1
15
Whiting
16
Bailey
34
Pitts
7
Burrow
22
Aspinwall
18
Clarkson
11
Manu
17
Kirke
28
Nicklas
21
Moore
35
Radford

Kick Off:
20:00
Half-Time:
14-0
Referee:
Tim Roby
Crowd:
13,250


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