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Posted by southstander on March 13 2014 - 16:55:51

The forgotten Rhino, Ben Jones-Bishop, recently associated with a possible loan move to the Wildcats seems to have shamed the boss into selecting him for the Friday night clash against the high flying Vikings.

Still to suffer their first loss of the season, Denis Betts will bring a side high on confidence and looking for their first win at Headingley since they first joined Superleague back in 2002.

Leeds will still be smarting from a second best performance against the Giants, from which we were lucky to escape with a point, and they will be looking to return to the form they showed in the opening three matches.

We preview the game, read more here...

Few in the rhinos camp can have been happy with the way that the Giants controlled last weeks game, but all will have been relieved that we managed to secure a point, and but for the width of the post we could have taken them both.

Carl Ablett and Brett Delaney both picked up knocks in the trip to the John Smith's but they have recovered enough to be included in the nineteen man squad. Jamie Jones-Buchanan came through his first outing of the season and also figures, while many Leeds fans will be relieved to see Ben Jones-Bishop back in contention rather than wearing another clubs shirt for a months loan.

Where exactly the boss is going to squeeze BJB is another matter and the best he can realistically hope for is a place on the bench. Ryan Bailey is also named after surprisingly missing out last week, but with such an embarrassment of riches, and the injuries being mercifully light, who do you leave out?

The full nineteen is; Hardaker, Jones-Bishop, Watkins, Moon, Hall, McGuire, Burrow, Leuluai, Aiton, Peacock, Jones-Buchanan, Ablett, Sinfield, Ward, Delaney, Bailey, Achurch, Briscoe and Singleton.

Denis Betts has three wins from three games against; the Broncos, the Giants and the Red Devils. Their winning run goes back six games to the 11th August when they lost a close game to the Castleford Tigers. Betts has a team that believe in their own ability and fear no-one.

The bad news for the Rhinos is that the Vikings have strengthened this week with the return of Ah Van, Phleps, Kavanagh and Lloyd. They are certainly a side not to be underestimated.

The Widnes ninteen is; Ah Van, Brown, Clarke, Clough, Craven, Dean, Flynn, Galea, Gerrard, Hanbury, Isa, Kavanagh, Leuluai, Lloyd, Mellor, Owens, Phelps, Tickle and White.

Of the twelve meetings in regular Superleague rounds, the Rhinos have been the victors on nine occasions. The Vikings last win was over ten years ago on the 28th June 2003 when they won in Widnes by 29-14. Leeds won the game at Headingley last season by 38-28 and the away game a fortnight later by 52-36.

History would suggest a high scoring encounter, but I suspect that with both teams boasting strong defences, it could be another nailbiter with just a try in it. Prediction
Rhinos 22 16 Vikings

The bookies have given the visitors a very disrespectful eighteen points start on the coupon. I'm not sure how they work that out and I think that it will be much closer.

The forecast for Friday night shows signs of the onset of spring with the temperature just about staying in double figures for the match and very little chance of rain. It should be the perfect conditions for an open game.

We have a guest reporter at the match and will bring you the report over the weekend. Travel safe and enjoy the match..



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