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Leeds Don't Like Mondays
Posted by southstander on May 20 2013 - 23:44:15

Opener
The Rhinos were coming off the back of a humiliating cup exit at the hands of the Huddersfield Giants and facing one of Superleagues current whipping boys in St Helens, a side who hadn't got a win to their name since the 1st April.

Despite being without Peacock and Ablett the Rhinos injury worries were mush less than those of Saints who were still without many of their stars and playing experienced staff out of position.

Even the bookies thought there could only be one winner.

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

22

Rhinos

v

Saints

30

Superleague XVIII - Round 15

20th May 2013

Leeds Don't Like Mondays

The Rhinos got off to a terrific start, partly thanks to great defence, but also thanks to a handful of Saints unforced errors in the opening twenty minutes.

The Rhinos first try came after just six minutes when we took advantage of three dropped balls from Saints in quick succession, the third after a massive hit from Ryan Bailey. As Leeds moved the ball to the right Zak Hardaker put Kallum Watkins through a gap to score. Sinfield missed the conversion.

Three miutes later and a short pass from McGuire found Moon who went five to score, McGuire being cleaned out by Soliola after the ball was passed. Leeds got the six but the spineless Thaler opted to put Soliola on report rather than in the stands, the decision would come back to haunt the Rhinos as it visibly effected McGuire from wanting to carry the ball for the rest of the game.

On twenty-one Burrow went over from acting half-back for the Rhinos third of the evening and as Sinfield slotted over the extras for 16-0 the Rhinos seemed to be toally in control of the game.


Scorer
You felt it was just a matter of how many we'd score. There was no entertaining thoughts of a Saints comeback, let alone a Saints victory.

But our lads uncharacteristically hit the self destruct button.

On twenty-seven, two quick penalties conceeded by the Rhinos on our own line caught Leeds napping and let McCarthy-Scarsbrook through a massive gap for Saints opener. Makinson added the extras but surely brief respite from the Rhinos scoring.

On thirty-two the margin was narrowed further, again thanks to Leeds being penalised by Thaler. Saints used four tackles in a set before Soliola found a big gap and made the Makinson conversion a formality for a half-time score of 16-12.

The scoreline didn't reflect Leeds first half dominance and the feeling on the terraces was that the Rhinos should be able to kick on and seal the points in the second half.

How wrong we were.

With the second half just five minutes old the scores were all level as Makinson completed a superb seventy metre break with a score. He failed to convert his own try, but momentum was definitely in the favour of the visitors.

On forty-eight Hardaker made an uncharacteristic error when trying to get out of his own goal area with ball in hand he stretched to ground the ball in the field of play, losing control and gifting a simple 'pick up and score' try to Laffranchi. Makinson foaled the extras for 16-22, now we were starting to get worried.


Big Game

On fifty-two a grubber on the last was allowed to bounce by Hardaker and pounced upon by Makinson for his second of the night and despite once again failing with the boot he had given his side a 16-26 lead. Leeds were in disarray and all kinds of trouble.

On the hour mark Bailey crahed over off a short Burrow pass to allow Sinfield a simple conversion and narrow the scoreline to 22-26 but that was as close as we'd get.

With seven minutes remaining Saints forced the Leeds drop out and two plays into the return Thompson stretched out an arm to score. Makinson again failed with the extras but his side held onto the 22-30 lead until the final hooter signalled for the remaining half of the Leeds supporters to join those who had already made for the exits.

This was a shocking lesson in how to throw away a game where you were in total control. The Rhinos bossed the first half and should have been twenty ahead rather than the measly four that they led by. In the second half they just bottled it against a Saints side who quite obviously had more belief and wanted the win more.

The Rhinos have entered their mid-season 'blip' and it doesn't bode well for next weeks Etihad Stadium clash with the Warriors.

Come on Leeds, get a grip.

Please vote for your Man-of-the-Match in the front page poll.


Match Facts

Rhinos
Saints
No.
Player
T
G
DG
No.
Player
T
G
DG
1
Hardaker
1
Wellens
25
Vickery
2
Gardner
3
Watkins
1
3
Turner
4
Moon
1
30
Percival
5
Hall
21
Makinson
2
3
13
Sinfield
3
23
Ashe
6
McGuire
12
Wilkin
8
Leuluai
8
Perry
7
Burrow
1
36
Howarth
16
Bailey
1
33
Thompson
1
11
Jones-Buchanan
4
Soliola
1
15
Delaney
13
Manu
18
Clarkson
10
McCarthy-Scarsbrook
1
17
Kirke
11
Puletua
26
Sutcliffe
19
Jones
21
Moore
14
Laffranchi
1
19
Achurch
25
Walmsley

Kick Off:
19:45
Half-Time:
16-12
Referee:
Ben Thaler
Crowd:
15,998


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