AUSTRALIAN CENTRE Joel Moon is tipping Leeds Rhinos to bounce back this year.
Rhinos are the Challenge Cup holders, but last season ended in their worst Super League finish since 1996.
After slumping to sixth in the table Rhinos crashed out of the play-offs at the first hurdle and ended the season on a four-game losing run.
Moon reckons valuable lessons were learned and he said signs in pre-season point to a successful campaign.
“Training has been awesome,” Moon said. “Mac, Plumey and Baz (coach Brian McDermott and assistants Chris Plume and Barry Eaton) have got the boys firing.
“The pre-season games have all gone to plan and we’re looking good for the season.
“We were up and down last year, but we have got to learn from those things.
“I think all the boys have taken some good stuff out of the back end of last season, when we weren’t going so well.
“All the boys are looking strong and we just want to get going now.”
Rhinos’ season begins away to Hull KR on Sunday, February 8.
“They are always tough at their home ground,” Moon observed. “But we can’t wait to get started and hopefully we’ll go well.”
Moon is now in full training after undergoing surgery on both knees last autumn and is hoping to feature in Jamie Peacock’s testimonial game against Bradford Bulls on Sunday.
“I’ve been doing a lot of boxing and stuff like that,” he said. “There’s been a few in the re-hab group and it has been tough, but not as tough as the boys who’ve been running.
“I am just itching to get back, get running and mix in with all the other boys. It has been a big pre-season, all the boys have come through it well and we’re looking really strong.”
Moon joined Rhinos from Salford ahead of the 2013 campaign and was second-highest try scorer that year, with 17 from 30 appearances.
After touching down nine times in 27 games last term he said he’s aiming to step up a gear in 2015.
“It’s my third year here coming up,” Moon said.
“I am looking to get better on everything in my game.
“I’ll be working hard and hopefully it’s a good season.”
Moon believes Rhinos supporters have yet to see the best of him.
“I am still growing as a player and a person,” said the 26-year-old.
“I am still working hard on some stuff and I am looking forward to this season.”