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Rhinos Triumph in Scrappy Doo
Posted by southstander on March 15 2013 - 23:31:09

Opener
All the pre-match chatter on the terraces was about the absence of Wigans' one-man, in their one-man team, Sam Tomkins. A dead-leg picked up in midweek training hadn't recovered in time and ratboy couldn't make the Warriors seventeen.

Leeds welcomed back Bailey and Achurch, in for McShane and Clarkson, but after last weeks shocking performance it was still touch and go as to whether we'd be able to compete with a Tomkinsless Wigan.

Throw in a Silverwood who appeared to pick tonight to have the worst game of his career (and that takes some doing) and we had a game that could go either way.

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

18

Rhinos

v

Warriors

14

Superleague XVIII - Round 7

15th March 2013

Rhinos Triumph in Scrappy Doo

The Rhinos set out their stall in the opening ten minutes, a ten during which they dominated possession and position and in which they were unlucky not to register an early try. It took a bit of the old McGuire magic, darting down the blind side, drawing the defender and releasing Ryan Hall to break the deadlock. The skipper kicked the extras and we'd got a deserved six point lead.

On eighteen the Warriors were back on level terms.

What looked like a knock-on at the play-the-ball saw the Rhinos defenders almost stop, allowing Farrell to run through the gap and ground the ball. Silverwood went to the video referee who took one look and ruled a try, despite the Wigan half-back appearing to push the ball along the ground before picking it up and passing it to Farrell. Smith added the two for 6-6, against the run of play and on the Warriors first real sortie into the Rhinos half.


Scorer
On twenty-five Ryan Hall almost grabbed his second after a brilliant Moon offload but the ball was too fast for the Worlds' Best Winger who juggled it into touch. Leeds inability to score saw them fall behind on the half-hour mark when Smith kicked a penalty following a high tackle.

Just before the end of the half it looked like Leeds had snatched the lead back from the visitors when a Sinfield grubber was picked up by Hall who dived over the line in a melee of players. Silverwood sent the decision upstairs and despite it being unclear on the replays Ian Smith decided not to give 'Benefit of the Doubt' and ruled that Hall had been held up.

Frustration with the officials was effecting the players and the crowd. The Warriors held onto their narrow half-time lead. The first score in the second half would be crucial.

That score would come to Leeds, thanks to a Wigan howler from Charnley who dropped an angled Sinfield kick within his own goal area and Joel Moon managed to drop on the ball to score. Silverwood, once again referred it, and despite watching the replay over twenty times Smith couldn't find anything to justify disallowing this one. Sinfield goaled for 12-8 but it was still nail-biting territory.

Leeds should have gone on to bury the game in the next ten minutes. On fifty a Kirke break saw him pass to McGuire who fumbled, reminiscent of the World Club Challenge. Five minutes later and it was Moons turn to find a gap and break down the left wing before passing inside to Burrow who knocked on with the line begging. The bad feeling about the night not being ours starting coming back to the surface.

On fifty-six Watkins chased back to make a try saving tackle and from the next play the ball the Warriors knocked on. They were as bad as us.

On the hour mark it looked as though Leeds had bombed a chance when a Moore offload took the Rhinos players by surprise and the ball went to ground. Leeds recovered the ball and through a broken Warriors defence it was Jones-Buchanan who made a jinking run for twenty metres to score by the left upright. Sinfield goaled for 18-8, but your felt that even a ten point lead might not be enough.


Winner

Sure enough, it took Wigan just a minute to narrow the margin again as the Rhinos were penalised for not playing the ball correctly and Wigan used all six tackled within the Rhinos twenty with Thornely going over on the left corner on the overlap. Smith added the extras for 18-14, setting up a what should have been a great last twenty.

But it was far from that with error after error from both sides with neither seeming to want to take the initiative.

We're still off the pace but tonight showed a far better spirit and speed at the play-the-ball than last week. McGuire and Burrow were running the show with Sinfield seemingly taking a back seat. The game was won in the forwards with big games from Leuluai, Peacock, Moore, Jones-Buchanan and the ever-awesome Delaney. We still look weak on Vickerys wing and Ablett went missing for periods tonight.

All-in-all a good win, but one which should have been much bigger, over a side who look desperately one-dimensional without Tomkins.

But I'll take a first regular season win over the Warriors for four years, cheers lads.

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


Match Facts

Rhinos
Warriors
No.
Player
T
G
DG
No.
Player
T
G
DG
3
Watkins
5
Richards
25
Vickery
2
Charnley
12
Ablett
3
Goulding
4
Moon
1
4
Hughes
5
Hall
1
17
Thornley
1
13
Sinfield
3
6
Green
6
McGuire
7
Smith
3
8
Leuluai
15
Flower
7
Burrow
9
McIlorum
10
Peacock
26
Crosby
11
Jones-Buchanan
1
16
Tuson
15
Delaney
12
Farrell
1
16
Bailey
13
O'Loughlin
17
Kirke
20
Dudson
19
Achurch
21
Taylor
21
Moore
23
Tomkins L.
14
Ward
29
Burke

Kick Off:
20:00
Half-Time:
06-08
Referee:
Richard Silverwood
Crowd:
15,524


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