RELIEVED Leeds Rhinos star Brett Ferres admits he was pleased to get a “happy ending” for once after his latest visit to Red Hall.
The England second-row appeared before the RFL’s independent disciplinary panel on Tuesday night charged with a dangerous contact on Wakefield Trinity forward Mickael Simon in last week’s 32-6 win at Belle Vue.
At the time, the incident was put on report by referee James Child but the panel ruled Ferres was not guilty of the “crusher” tackle and so is free to play in Rhinos’ next fixture.
The 30-year-old was banned for five games following a “spear” tackle on St Helens’ Jonny Lomax while playing for Huddersfield Giants in 2014 and was also given a one-game suspension two years earlier for a dangerous throw on Hull FC’s Danny Houghton.
Speaking to the YEP, he said: “Obviously, it’s always a bit difficult going to the disciplinary as you’re never quite sure what’s going to happen.
“But we had a pretty strong case, to be fair, to prove that I didn’t actually do anything wrong and I was glad we got the outcome we did.
“I did probably feel like I was owed a decent result – I’ve been a couple of times and got some hefty ones with some tough calls. So, it was pleasing to go in there and come out with a happy ending.”
Things are also looking a little happier for Leeds, too, after recording back-to-back wins for the first time this season.
They remain bottom but Ferres added: “We’ve tweaked a few things and started to see the benefits.
“We were a lot stronger at Wakefield and looked a lot better attacking.
“There’s been times this season where we’ve had a lot of ball but just not been able to get over the line so we were really pleased to get the job done but score some points, too.”
Rhinos, of course, remain bottom but are intent on finishing strongly and hold hope of still finishing eighth.
They host eighth-placed Widnes Vikings in their next game a week on Sunday when a third straight win could narrow the gap to just four points with three matches to go.
Ferres said: “Obviously there is still a chance for us to do something.
“Regardless of whether we do or not, we just want to put some results together and repay the fans for some poor performances this year.
“We’re going week by week and that’s just narrowed our focus – made it sharper – and it’s Widnes next.”
The ex-Castleford Tigers and Wakefield Trinity forward, meanwhile, attended new England boss Wayne Bennett’s first squad meeting last week.
“It’s always good to get together with the England boys, share a chat and see how everyone us,” said Ferres. “It’s a fresh environment now, too, with a new coach and it was interesting.
“It was great to meet Wayne and his coaching team and, hopefully, I’ll get the opportunity to do so again come the end of the season.
“Like most coaches, he’s coming over here to do a job.
“He’s won a lot of things and he’ll bring that winning culture to the England camp.
“We’re not far from that ourselves – we’ve made some massive strides – but Wayne does have an aura about him and when he talked you could see everyone was listening to every word.”