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Clumsy Rhinos Gift Points
Posted by southstander on April 10 2007 - 23:35:09

Senior

For the second match running we witnessed a nail-biter won in the dying seconds.

The only difference was that tonight the winners deserved the victory, whereas last thursday we were very lucky to escape with the points.

Brian Noble has brought a side to Headingley, drilled them well in how to beat us, and then capitalised on the errors from a handful of Rhinos players whose confidence meters are showing deep in the red.

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

18

Rhinos

v

Warriors

20

SLXII - Round 9

10th April 2007

Clumsy Rhinos Gift Points

From the earliest exchanges it was clear that this was going to be a game governed by speed, ferocious hits and a large number of handling errors. You could almost hear Eddie and Stevo in the commentary box waxing lyrical about our great game as big hit followed big hit.

After the game got off to such a rip-roaring start it was a bit of an anti-climax that the first points came from the boot of Pat Richards after the Rhinos were ruled offside. But, on eleven minutes, the first try of the game was in favour of the Rhinos.

Two quick penalties had given the Rhinos a quick tap on the Wigan twenty and Diskin moved the ball left, through the hands of Burrow to Keith Senior who barged over to ground the ball. Sinfield missed the goal attempt from the touchline, how costly that would later turn out to be.

It was the twenty-third minute before the next score and this time it was the Rhinos who transgressed and paid the price. Bailey was placed on report for a clumsy high tackle, and one which probably won't escape the disciplinary, and from the resulting penalty a Wigan grubber was touched down by Fletcher. Richards added the extra points for 4-8.

Just after the half hour, Ellis, giving 100%, was held on his back over the line, but it was the last and the Rhinos were forced to handover.

A second warning (I thought they only got one) was given to O'Loughlin after thirty-seven for repeated interference, and when Fielden did it again just seconds later, he saw yellow. This really was the Rhinos chance to start the second half with an onslaught.


Awesome

Despite starting the second half with twelve men, it was Wigan who increased their lead. A grubber kick was pounced on by Calderwood, too fast for Ashley Gibson, who managed to touch down just in the field of play. The Video Referee ruled TRY and Vaealki added the extras. We were now 4-14 down but you believed that if we could tighten up on the errors we still had a chance of snatching it.

On fifty, Richards kicked a long range goal after Toopi had conceeded two penalties in thirty seconds. We now needed a fightback, and quick.


Tried Hard
On fifty-seven we looked like we had eased ourselves back into the game. A Sinfield grubber was missed by the Wigan defenders and McGuire touched down the loose ball. Silverwood went to the video referee and he ruled a twenty-metre restart. Unseen by the 16k Leeds crowd, McGuire must have knocked-on. But two minutes later and we scored for real thanks to a superb twenty metre solo Rob Burrow try. Just deserts for a man-of-the-match performance.

Sinfield added the extra two and we were just six behind.

Just two minutes more had elapsed when a great series of forward drives allowed Ellis to power over on his back and ground the ball. Sinfields goal drew us level, we were in for a nail-biting last twenty.

On sixty-seven, Gareth Hock was sin-binned for a professional foul right in-front of his sticks and Sinfield gave the Rhinos a slender two point lead. Three minutes later and it looked like victory was our when Toopi went over, only to drop the ball over the line when it looked easier to score. Now we needed to hold on for the last ten.

With just over a minute remaining, the Rhinos had done well to defend their line after another daft Bailey penalty had conceeded ground. As we worked the ball out from our line, and on just the third tackle, Keith Senior threw a blind pass into touch to gift the ball to our visitors. Whether there was a call from outside or not, this was not something that a seasoned professional should be doing in a situation where we were defending a narrow lead. It was one of the most stupid things that I have ever seen from any Leeds player.

From the resulting scrum, and with just a few seconds remaining, Phil Bailey grounded the ball in the right hand corner. Richards failed to convert but it didn't matter for the joyous visiting supporters who were about to begin a long journey over the Pennines in very high spirits.

Lets be honest, we didn't deserve to win tonight. Wigan outplayed us in almost every department and our own catalogue of stupid mistakes cost us the ball at key moments. We must have made double the number of first half tackles that the visitors did and that sapped the stamina for late in the game. We always managed to keep in touch and with the fightback around the hour mark we looked to have scrambled a win, but it wasn't to be. Well done Wigan, we can take nothing away from your great victory.

But....and it is a big but. Our indiscipline and poor ball control cost us massively tonight. Bailey is a liability, gifting pressure relieving penalties. Senior had the biggest brain-dump seen for many a season with his suicidal blind pass. And I'd be prepared to organise a collection for one-way tickets back to Australia for Toopi and Leuleui. There must be two awesome players down under somewhere called Toopi and Leuleui, because they sure as hell aren't in Leeds.

This simply isn't good enough. We need a new attitude, a new coach, a handful of new players and a few tubes of Superglue!

I have a feeling that this is going to be another long and trophyless season.

Man of the Match Poll

Points
Player%
10
Burrow46%
8
Peacock33%
6
Ellis11%
5
Bailey9%
4
Thackray2%

See here for season standings.


Match Facts

Rhinos
Warriors
No.
Player
T
G
DG
No.
Player
T
G
DG
1
Webb
4
Withers
2
Donald
2
Calderwood
1
3
Toopi
3
Bailey
1
4
Senior
1
14
Vaealiki
1
20
Gibson
5
Richards
3
6
McGuire
6
Barrett
7
Burrow
1
7
Leuleui
16
Bailey
8
Fielden
9
Diskin
16
Millard
10
Peacock
18
Prescott
11
Jones-Buchanan
11
Hock
12
Ellis
1
12
Fletcher
1
13
Sinfield
3
13
O'Loughlin
8
Leuleui
1
Ashton
14
Lauiti'iti
9
Higham
15
Thackray
24
O'Carroll
18
Kirke
10
Palea'aesina

Kick Off:
20:00
Half-Time:
04-08
Referee:
Richard Silverwood
Crowd:
16,465


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