Leeds Rhinos fan Keith is mower than your average gardener

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It is among the biggest days in the rugby league calendar - and one Leeds hotel wants everyone to know where its allegiances lie ahead of kick-off.

In the run-up to Saturday’s Challenge Cup final clash between Leeds Rhinos and Hull KR, the head gardener at Thorpe Park Hotel & Spa has mowed the letters of his local team into the grass outside the building.

Keith Boyes, head gardener at Thorpe Park Hotel, gives the grass one last cut.

Keith Boyes, head gardener at Thorpe Park Hotel, gives the grass one last cut.

Keith Boyes, a keen Rhinos fan, hopes the 16 foot high letters on display at the hotel near Garforth will act as a good luck charm at Wembley.

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Nick Joannou, operations manager at the hotel, said: “Keith has been our gardener since we opened the hotel 13 years ago, he has been with us since April 2002.

“He is a big Rhinos fan and Chris Hudson, our maintenance manager who has been with us for six years, is a Rhinos fan.

“It started from the first time they won the Grand Final. He did it then and it is now his thing. Every time Leeds Rhinos have been in the final or a major event he has done it as a good luck charm.

“Kevin Sinfield is Chris Hudson’s idol, we were lucky enough last year when the England rugby league team came to stay here. Kevin was there and Chris got to meet him so that strengthened the relationship with the club.

“Keith is a professional, it is not so much the difficulty of doing it, it just needs care and attention. He keeps that area quite clear and we have trimmed the trees to give it maximum visibility. It is something he does particularly well. In the past we would have had to pay someone to do that but luckily we have our head gardener.

“It is lovely. Aside from the fact that Keith and Chris are big fans, we are based in east Leeds and have had the team come and stay with us in the past. We think it is a lovely thing for the area. It is always good to see the local team doing well.”

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Other local fans are showing their devotion to the team - one couple have transformed their back garden in Burley into a Leeds Rhinos den.

With excitement building ahead of the big day, the YEP wants to hear your good luck messages for the Rhinos. Email yep.newsdesk@ypn.co.uk.

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