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On Yer Bike for Rhinos v. Dragons
Posted by southstander on June 27 2014 - 13:39:11

Big Man Back
The French arrive at Headingley unbeaten in five games, including that stunning win over the league leaders a couple of weeks ago. That said the Rhinos went to fortress Perpignan back in February and scored a convincing win, the only side to win in the South of France this season.

It promises to be a Tour de France themed game, just a week before 'le Grand Depart' heads out of Leeds on their 3,664 kilometre jaunt.

Depending on the outcome of tonights game between the Warriors and the Saints, the Rhinos could have a chance to go back top, it could be a pivotal weekend in the quest for the top spot.

We preview the game, read more here...

Jamie Jones-Buchanan lasted just one game of his comeback before being sidelined with another injury. McGuire and Aiton came through with flying colours, although the latter looks to have a long way to go before attaining full match fitness. Ian Kirke is also missing from the ninteen after picking up an injury last weekend but Luke Briscoe gets a recall to the squad, although he is unlikely to make the final seventeen.

After being rested last week, Jamie Peacock and Kylie Leuluai are both back in the squad for Sundays match and they will be joined by Mitch Achurch who hasn't played in over a month.

Big Mac names his squad as; Jones-Bishop, Watkins, Moon, Hall, McGuire, Leuluai, Aiton, Peacock, Ablett, Sinfield, Ward, Delaney, Bailey, Achurch, Briscoe T, Sutcliffe, Singleton, Walters, and Briscoe L.

Laurent Frayssinous has some good news with Elima, Anderson and Pelissier all back in contention, the first two returning from injury and the latter from suspension.

The Dragons have hit a rich vein of form of late which has seen them mount an unbeaten run in their quest for a strong top eight position. Frayssinous will be over the early season jitters which came close to costing him his position and enraged the Catalans owner.

His nineteen is pretty strong and is made up of; Escaré, Pryce, Pomeroy, Oldfield, Elima, Henderson, Lima, Taia, Anderson, Mounis, Pelissier, Whitehead, Millard, Bousquet, Baitieri, Duport, Cardace, Garcia, and Williams.

We could be in for a humdinger.

This will be the nineteenth meeting between the two sides in regular weekly rounds during the Superleague era. The Rhinos have won on fourteen occasions including the early season encounter in the South of France by 40-12. The Dragons have won just four times with the last being the 34-38 win in Perpignan in 2012. The last time that the Dragons came to Leeds it was the Rhinos who ran out as 20-12 winners.

The Dragons have never won a regular rounds match at Headingley.

Southstander.com Prediction
Rhinos 28 20 Dragons

This should be a Leeds win, banking on the usual Dragons travel sickness, but if they find their top form then it will be a tough one for us. The odds aren't up at the time of writing but I suspect that the handicap will be low single digits. Otherwise, if you can afford to, load on the Dragons.

Theforecast for Sunday is okay, but it is definitely more North of England than South of France. It shouldn't rain but it's not going to be that warm. Conditions for a good fast game of open rugby, I do hope so.

Travel safe and enjoy the game. Fingers crossed for a return to the top of the pile...come on Wigan...oh, now I feel dirty!

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