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Leeds Lose the Lazenby
Posted by southstander on January 30 2005 - 19:32:55

Baby Beefy Brace
By Matthew Horton

The Lazenby Cup will be residing South of the River for the next 12 months after a young Rhinos side, which included 3 players from last years Foundation Academy, threw away a 22 point lead against a determined Hunslet Hawks side in an alarming second half slump.

There was a disappointing turn out at the South Leeds Stadium for this fixture, which was played in bitterly cold conditions.

22

Rhinos

v

Hunslet Hawks

24

Lazenby Cup

30th January 2005

Leeds Lose the Lazenby

The Rhinos had a stiff breeze at their backs in the first half and it didn’t take long for the action to get heated on the pitch as the props Feather and Staveley squared up to each other in the first minute of the game. It was the Rhinos who took the lead on 11 minutes when Scott Murrell put Liam Botham through the gap; he danced around the full back Raynor and went in under the posts. Ashley Gibson converted.

Three minutes later the Rhinos were in again, off the back of a penalty, which set the Rhinos up in the Hunslet 20. Jason Golden took advantage, on the last tackle, of some slack blindside defence to dive over in the corner. Gibson was off target. The Rhinos fans didn’t have wait to long for the next try, Raynor dropped a huge bomb from Carl Ablett and Michael Brown was on hand to touch down. Gibson converted and the Rhinos led 16-0 after 17 minutes.

Leeds has a let off on 28 minutes when Chris Buttery missed a kick through from Danny Thomas but the ball evaded Jason Hunter and the touch judge ruled a 20-metre restart. After the escape Leeds took full advantage, Thomas spilled a kick from Gallagher and from the resulting scrum Liam Botham gathered the ball and powered his was over the line despite the attempts of three defenders to drag him back. Gibson converted and at 22-0 the forks were almost out.

Hunslet to their credit kept going and were rewarded on 34 minutes, on the last tackle Cass shaped to kick but instead flung the ball across the line and quick hands allowed Danny Cook to squeeze in at the corner. Wray’s goal attempt was a county mile off. Just before half time there was an exchange of views between Hawley and Dave Tootill that could have led to a bit of knuckle but the Rhinos went in 22-4 at half time.

Playing into the teeth of the wind, the Rhinos made a strong start to the second half. Dave Tootill looked to have scored in the 42nd minutes but by the time referee Hewer got there he ruled the second row forward has been held up. But it was the Hawks who got on the board first in the second half, a short side move involving Thomas and Cass saw the scrum half pop a super ball out for Jason Hunter to squeeze in at the corner. Wray’s conversion hit the woodwork and bounced out but the Hawks now had the tails up.

Leeds thought they had scored again in the 56th minute when a flowing move saw Chris Buttery get over the line, but in the challenge of Raynor referee Hewer ruled that the ball had been lost and disallowed the score, Buttery was furious and gave the referee a piece of his mind and was dispatched to the Sin Bin. This was the Hawk’s big chance and they took advantage almost immediately, Danny Thomas who moved into the stand off role was having an ever increasing influence on proceedings and his cross field run found Paul Cummins at pace and he rounded Ashley Gibson to go over, he made the angle better and Wray popped over his first goal of the afternoon to bring the Hawks back to within 8 points.

Hunslet were now on top and making full use of the man advantage, 3 minutes later they were in again as Thomas released Wray and the loose forward had options on both side and he went infield to Thomas who went in under the posts untouched. Wray again converted and it was a two-point ball game with still a quarter of the game to go.

The Rhinos immediately returned Murrell and Botham back into the action in an attempt to get another try which could kill off the game but it was the Hawks who found the winning touch with 5 minutes to go. The Rhinos defence was caught short on the outside and a cut out ball from Bastow found Cummins at pace and he went in at the corner for what turned out to be the winning score. Wray was off target and the Hawks held on to reclaim the Lazenby Cup.

Full credit to the Hawks, on the second half showing they will be a side to watch in NL2 this season, Danny Thomas was inspirational after moving into midfield and in Mark Cass there is a wealth of experience. Testimonial man Steve Pryce was a powerful influence in the pack along with the props Staveley and Mick Gibbons. Jermaine Wray at loose forward got the vote as man of the match for the Hawks and it was pretty hard to disagree with that.

The Rhinos had a very youthful side out today, Scott Murrell and Liam Botham probably being the pick of the side on show. Pat on the back for Luke Burgess who put some big hits in and Iain Gordon was safe under the high ball at full back. On this showing today there are signs that the Senior Academy will be there or there abouts when it come to the play off race come the end of the season. So that’s pre season 2005 and it’s off to Elland Road for the big one on Friday.


Match Facts

Rhinos
Hawks
No.
Player
T
G
DG
No.
Player
T
G
DG
1
Gordon
1
Raynor
2
Williams
2
Carey
3
Buttery
3
Thomas
1
4
Gibson
3
4
Cummins
2
5
Brown
1
5
Hunter
1
6
Murrell
6
Bastow
7
Gallagher
7
Cass
8
Feather
8
Staveley
9
I'Anson J.
9
Hawley
10
Scruton
10
Gibbons M.
11
Golden
1
11
Freeman W.
12
Botham
2
12
Freman G.
13
Ablett
13
Wray
2
14
Tansey
14
Carbutt
15
I'Anson C.
15
Pryce
16
Burgess
16
Cook
1
17
Walsh
17
Tepper
30
Hart
Morton
31
Tootill
McClelland
32
Ratu
Hamed

Kick Off:
15:00
Half-Time:
22-04
Attendance:
?
Referee:
Gareth Hewer


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