BOSS BRIAN McDermott was pleased with Leeds Rhinos’ 26-14 win over Wigan Warriors , but admitted they were far from their best.
Rhinos returned to winning ways just a week after suffering their first defeat of the season, 18-6 at Warrington Wolves.
The victory keeps them in touch with Super League leaders St Helens and McDermott said: “Losing any game is tough. As long as we played well, I think that was the big thing – and I don’t know if we did. I thought we were all right again in spells and not so good in other spells, which is a bit of a theme at the moment for us.
“I think the comforting thing is, in terms of energy and attitude, I thought we were cracking tonight.
“We had to go with the ebb and flow of the game.
“Wigan are in a tough position at the moment and they were trying pretty much anything to get back into the game, but we handled that, managed it, regrouped and went again, which is pleasing.”
Substitutes Brad Singleton and Rob Burrow were among Rhinos’ try scorers and Andy Yates came on for only his second senior appearance.
McDermott said: “One of the differences between last year and this is we are bringing people off the bench and they are upping the intensity and adding to it.”
Rhinos’ second try was scored by teenage winger Ash Handley, who was called up for only his second Super League game, in place of shoulder injury victim Tom Briscoe.
McDermott said Briscoe needs surgery and is facing “a number of weeks” on the sidelines.
Zak Hardaker was recalled at full-back a week after being dropped over his involvement in an assault in Leeds last month.
McDermott said he expects an internal investigation into Hardaker’s behaviour, being conducted by Rhinos chief executive Gary Hetherington, to be concluded within the next few days.