It is continuing good news for Brian McDermott as his once injured troops return to first team action as we move towards the end of the regular season. This week sees the welcome return of Zak Hardaker after a five game suspension, Jamie Jones-Buchanan makes his second injury return of the season and Kylie Leuluai is also available for selection after missing out last week against Hull KR.
Ian Kirke is also recalled to the nineteen in a strong looking squad of; Hardaker, Jones-Bishop, Watkins, Moon, Hall, McGuire, Burrow, Leuluai, Aiton, Peacock, Jones-Buchanan, Ablett, Sinfield, Delaney, Kirke, Achurch, Briscoe, Sutcliffe, and Walters. It looks like Jones-Bishop will miss out but I'd have no idea who will join his as a water carrier on what promises to be a warm evening.
Daryl Powell returns to Headingley in charge of a side who have exceeded many peoples expectations in Superleague XIX and who are serious contenders for both the hub cap and the Grand Final. He has recalled Luke Dorn at full-back and is lilely to play acomplished goal kicker Marc Sneyd at stand-off. Ex-Rhinos Welller Hauraki is also available for selection in a nineteen of; Dixon, Shenton, Webster, Carney, Dorn, Sneyd, Lynch, Milner, Huby, Millington, Hauraki, Massey, Clark, Holmes, Mariano, Wheeldon, Ellis, Finn, and Jewitt.
Leeds won the first match between the sides back in early May by 22-14 thanks to two each from Jones-Bishop and Watkins and since the start of the summer era the Rhinos have won twenty-seven and drawn two of the thirty-nine encounters. The Tigers have some catching up to do, but this could be the side to do it before the end of season sees the side dismantled by transfers.
The bookies are giving the visitors an eight point start on the coupon and I'd hope that they are pretty close with perhaps a slightly larger winning margin to welcome back the returnees.
That said this will be a hard faught game and could be an absolute classic for the SKY cameras. Every outcome will see a new league leader, even the draw, but who will it be?
From the forecast is for temperatures in excess of twenty degrees throughout the game but it will be hot and humid, unpleasant for the players and the expected large crowd.
Travel safe, enjoy the match and cheer the lads to a win...