TREBLE WINNERS Leeds Rhinos will get better, winger Ryan Hall insists.
Rhinos lost their opening Super League game for the first time since 2000 when Warrington Wolves won 12-10 at Headingley last week.
It was a disappointing start to Rhinos’ new era, without club legends Kevin Sinfield, Jamie Peacock and Kylie Leuluai, but Hall is confident they were not far off and will get better as the season goes on.
Rhinos did most of the attacking and created numerous opportunities, without being able to break down Warrington’s well-organised defence.
Hall, who was Leeds’ man of the match, said: “There’s definitely things to build on.
“It was round one and, at this time of the season, it is about finding your feet and learning about yourselves.
“Hopefully you can get a win along the way, but obviously that wasn’t the case.
“It’s disappointing it was two points lost, but it could have gone the other way.
“We had enough in ourselves to win the game and, on another day, we might have done.
“That’s how close the competition is and it’s how it might go for any game during the season.”
Warrington finished sixth in 2015, but Hall reckons last week’s result was as much about them playing well as Leeds being below-par.
Both teams scored two tries, but Warrington’s star signing Kurt Gidley landed both conversions, while Zak Hardaker was off target with two of this three kicks.
Hall added: “I think we need to give credit where it’s due.
“Warrington did a lot more defending than we did and they certainly stopped some plays we thought we were going to score off.
“In the first half Liam Sutcliffe received an off-load from Adam Cuthbertson and they had enough bodies around him to make him drop it.
“On another day he might have scored that and there was one when Rob Burrow was through and Ben Currie appeared from the other side of the field and tackled him.
“Those sorts of efforts from Warrington need to be commended, and that’s probably why they won.
“They made those efforts across the field. I am not saying we didn’t, but it got them home in the end.”
Having opened round one, Rhinos have to wait until the final day of round two for their second match at Widnes Vikings, who won away to Wakefield Trinity Wildcats in their first fixture on Sunday.
Hall said there are positives and negatives to having such a long break between games at this early stage of the year.
“It is a massive turnaround,” reflected the England star.
“We have got 10 days between games, but the way our team is we want to get straight back on the field.
“We would rather have a short turnaround to get playing again, but that’s not the case.
“We have to watch the rest of the competition go at it twice before we play again, which is frustrating.
“But that’s what we’ve got in front of us.
“We have got to train hard because after Widnes it is the World Club Challenge and we know how much that means.
“We can’t be moping around.
“We have got to use the time wisely and I am sure we will.”