LAST NIGHT’S 20-14 loss to Bradford Bulls will not ruin Leeds Rhinos’ build-up to next Saturday’s Tetley’s Challenge Cup semi-final, boss Brian McDermott insisted.
The defeat cost Leeds the chance to go top of the First Utility Super League table and McDermott pointed to a “ridiculous” number of errors made by his team.
“It won’t ruin the week at all, but you wouldn’t plan for that,” McDermott said.
The Leeds coach paid tribute to Bulls and their coach James Lowes, his former assistant, but was deeply unhappy with the way his team played.
Describing himself as “frustrated”, McDermott said: “It was a ridiculous amount of ball we lost. In terms of desire and effort it was almost too much.
“We got a bit bloody-minded mid-way through the second half. We just needed to calm down a bit and have a bit more intelligence.
“I have no qualms with the nature of the loss, it’s just the way we played. It was dropped ball that cost us the game, not inexperience.”
Rhinos lost winger Ben Jones-Bishop in the first half and McDermott said: “It’s not looking great. He has done something to his knee and twisted his ankle at the same time. It could be his season gone.”
Meanwhile, former Rhinos full-back Brent Webb has confirmed his retirement due to a persistent back injury.
Webb, who was at last night’s game, joined Leeds in 2007 and played in three Grand Final victories before joining Catalan Dragons at the end of 2012.