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Dragons Put to the Sword
Posted by southstander on February 22 2008 - 23:40:23

Super Scott

This was a game that was never likely to trouble the Rhinos. But for a brief moment in the opening ten minutes there was just litlebit of doubt that we weren't taking this seriously enough. But it was short-lived as the Rhinos class shone through an error strewn game, ineptly refereed by Mr Thaler.

It was the final warm-up game before the World Club Challenge against Melbourne, and that is exactly how it looked.

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

34

Rhinos

v

Dragons

06

Superleague XIII

Round 3

22nd February 2008

Dragons Put to the Sword

The only change that Bluey made was a straight swap of Leuleui for Scruton in the starting prop position with Nick dropping out of the seventeen , and probably the reckoning for next weeks Elland Road game. The visitors had new boy Carlaw in their staring line-up and wee relying heavily on the half-back pairing of McGuire and Bosc to fire them. It was a blustery, if mild night as the sides entered the field, Leeds playing the first half attacking the western terrace with a strong wind in their faces.

Leeds started well, pressurising the Catalans line from the whistle, but totally against the run of play it was the visitors who took a shock lead. The Dragons had done excellently to keep the Rhinos ay bay when on seven minutes, and on their first real offensive play, Pelo went fifty metres to score in the corner. With the wind at his back. Bosc converted brilliantly from the touchline and the small band of Franglais supporters were the one celebrating as the South Stand fell silent.

Despite the early setback, the Rhinos continued with their domination and in the sixteenth minute finally got the breakthrough. Leeds were camped in the Catalans twenty and kept the ball alive brilliantly despite the play being early in the tackle count. After a string of a dozen or so passes, Burrow passed out left to Senior who in turn found Scott Donald who went over near the corner flag. Sinfield could not contend with the wind and pushed the conversion across the front of the posts.

Five minutes later and we hit the front for the first time in the game.

Thaler gave Leeds a penalty after Sinfield appeared to be dumped on his head (one for the disciplinary panel) and after a couple of tackles the ball was moved left to exploit an emerging weakness from the French side and Senior crossed the whitewash. Sinfield missed again from wide to give us an 8-6 lead.

On thirty-one a miraculous last ditch tackle from Brent Webb saved a certain try and the Dragons coughed up the ball.


Two for Keith

On thirty-five the visitors indiscipline cost them again as a penalty for a high tackle on Danny McGuire gave the field position for Ian Kirke to spin off the attempted tackle and dive over the line. Sinfield added the extras, to keep his consecutive scoring game run going, and to take the Rhinos to a 14-6 half-time lead.

Just as the hooter sounded the referees patience ran out and Guisset saw yellow for persistant interference, the Dragons would play the first ten of the second half a man down.

The cost was to be dear as with the second session just five minutes old the Dragons spilled the ball on their own twenty and the Rhinos picked it up and moved it left for Donald to get his second. Sinfield once again failed with the boot.


Kirke Try
The Dragons then weathered the storm, but they couldn't get over the line thank to resolute Rhinos defence. Then, on sixty-three, Leeds extended their lead with a Peacock break, pass to Webb who offloaded to McGuire in the tackle. Danny went thirty to score under the sticks and Rob Burrow added the extras, but in back-paly Webb was being helped to his feet and was bleeding profusely from the mouth after taking a late hit.

The game had now turned into a training run-out for the Rhinos and on seventy-two a delightful flowing move saw a fifty metre Senior try off an Ablett pass as the conclusion to a great Smith intercept a few seconds earlier. Sinfield goaled for 30-6 and the French were off home after another fruitless sortie into England.

The final action of the game saw Ali Lauiti'iti diving over the line off a short Sinfield pass. This time the skipper hit the upright with the conversion but it didn't really matter as we had a comprehensive 34-6 win over a side who should have posed us more problems than they did.

It was quite a scrappy game played in a strange atmosphere. The Rhinos ever really had to get out of first gear and despite Potters men trying to 'rough us up' we didn't get flustered and were professional in our response. There were lots of errors and dropped ball from both sides, but in the end the Rhinos showed their class in depth to take the points and guarantee top spot in the league, with the only 100% record, despite our week off next weekend.


Man of the Match Poll

Points
Player%
10
Senior26%
8
Lauiti'iti21%
6
Donald18%
4
Peacock9%
4
Webb9%
2
Ellis6%
2
McGuire6%

See here for season standings.


Match Facts

Rhinos
Dragons
No.
Player
T
G
DG
No.
Player
T
G
DG
1
Webb
1
Greenshields
2
Donald
2
23
Stacul
3
Toopi
3
Wilson
4
Senior
2
4
Mogg
5
Smith
5
Pelo
1
6
McGuire
1
6
Bosc
1
7
Burrow
1
7
McGuire
8
Leuleui
8
Ferriol
9
Diskin
9
Gorrell
10
Peacock
10
Guisset
11
Jones-Buchanan
14
Carlaw
12
Ellis
19
Chan
13
Sinfield
2
11
Raguin
14
Lauiti'iti
1
13
Mounis
16
Bailey
15
Griffi
18
Kirke
1
24
Casty
19
Ablett
26
Baile

Kick Off:
20:00
Half-Time:
14-06
Referee:
Ben Thaler
Crowd:
14,083


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