Leeds Rhinos: Backroom changes have freshened us up - Burrow

Long-serving scrum-half Rob Burrow reckons Leeds Rhinos have been "freshened up" by a change of coaching staff.

Burrow believes the transition from Brian McClennan to Brian McDermott has had a positive effect as Leeds prepare for their opening engage

Super League fixture against Bradford Bulls on February 13.

"That's the big word, fresh," said Burrow. "When it's new you start again with a clean slate. You've got to impress the coach, so it improves training a little bit.

"That has certainly been the case. There are a lot of players pushing for a spot, so it'll be a headache for Brian when it comes to picking the first team."

Burrow added: "Training has been great.

"There's been a lot of changes this year, but everything's fresh and everyone's enjoying it.

"It is a great place to be at the moment. Everybody enjoys coming to training every day.

"We're working hard – and it is hard, but that's pre-season for you – and we are raring to go now."

This year will mark a decade since Burrow's debut, in a home defeat by Hull on April 6, 2001.

The 28-year-old has so far made a total of 218 starts and 75 appearances off the bench, scoring 128 tries and 147 goals.

Despite those impressive statistics, he reckons he has a point to prove this year after a below-par 2010 campaign.

"I had a bad year with injuries, but I was disappointed generally," he said. "I want to play every game this year.

"I am enjoying it under the new coaching staff and I hope it freshens me up as a player as well."

Burrow's long-term half-back partner Danny McGuire is facing another four months on the sidelines as he recovers from a knee reconstruction and that will heap more responsibility on Burrow's shoulders.

"You can't replace Danny McGuire," he stated. "Kev (Sinfield) and I will do our best for the team and we're confident we can do that."

Rhinos signed a scrum-half for the first time since Burrow broke through into the senior team, when former rugby union player Rory Kettlewell joined the squad on a two-year deal last month.

The 18-year-old rookie is still learning his trade, but Burrow said Kettlewell has "shown some great signs in training".

And he enthused: "The friendlies have given him a real taste of rugby league, it is exciting for him and he's learning lots off the coaching staff.

"It's good for me, because competition for places is something we haven't really had in the halves.

"There hasn't been another specialist half-back – we've played people like Brent Webb there.

"It keeps everybody on their toes. You want people pushing you because that brings out your best. Every position needs that."

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