Leeds Rhinos: We need to ensure win isn’t a one-off - Watkins

Luke Briscoe celebrates his opening try against Salford with Kallum Watkins and Jamie Jones-Buchanan.
Luke Briscoe celebrates his opening try against Salford with Kallum Watkins and Jamie Jones-Buchanan.
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KALLUM WATKINS has urged his Leeds Rhinos side to make sure their rare win isn’t just another solitary success.

The England centre helped the defending champions defeat Salford Red Devils 8-0 on Friday – a first win in eight games and only the fourth victory of a sorry campaign.

Each time Leeds have prospered before, however, they have not managed to back it up, something they will look to remedy at Wakefield this Friday.

“Hopefully, this is the start of something decent for us,” said Watkins, after a first triumph since defeating Hull FC on April 15.

“We need to go on a run now and play confidently as well.

“The times we have won this season we have not responded straight after it and continued to build momentum.

“The past couple of months haven’t been great.

“This win has given us confidence but we are not the finished article.

“We need to build on this but getting the win will give us the confidence.”

Leeds showed character to dig out the victory amid the rain and murky conditions at Headingley, also nilling opponents for the first time since last August’s Challenge Cup final win over Hull KR.

Watkins, who got married on Saturday at Castle Howard near York, continued: “We are happy with the win.

“There were lots of errors in the game and opportunities for both teams to take advantage.

“But both teams defended well to keep it at that score line.

“I am very proud because the players worked hard. We are pleased and we are pleased to get the win for the fans.

“They are here week in, week out for us and it has been tough this season. But they have stuck by us. The support they showed tonight was immense and they have supported us through the tough times.”

Watkins, like his struggling team-mates, has received plenty of criticism this term having scored just five tries in 20 games so far.

“There is always going to be talk and opinions,” he said.

“Everyone is entitled to that. What you have got to do is just not listen to it, keep it our of your head and focus on on getting better.

“That’s all we have been trying to do.

“These past couple of weeks have been tough. But we haven’t focused on what other people have said.

“That’s part of life. Everyone entitled to their opinions.

“It’s a place you don’t want to be (losing all the time).

“It’s tough but it’s down to this group to get ourselves back.

“We just have to continue to work hard.

“The attitude is there but when you get the chances in games you have got to take them, defend your line and save tries. We haven’t been doing that all year.

“There were positives the week before and we knew we could beat Salford. “

Meanwhile, out-of-contract Penrith Panthers hooker James Segeyaro has said he has turned down a deal in Super League for 2017 – thought to be offered by Leeds – in order to try and continue his career in the NRL.

Joel Moon.

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