Agar's agenda: What will Leeds Rhinos boss Richard Agar be focusing on this week?

A 22-8 win at Salford Red Devils in Betfred Super League round four completed back to back victories for Leeds Rhinos. So what might be on coach Richard Agar’s agenda this week ahead of Friday’s visit of Warrington Wolves?

Monday, 24th February 2020, 5:17 pm
Updated Monday, 24th February 2020, 5:19 pm
Stevie Ward. Picture by Tony Johnson.

1: Second-row situation. Stevie Ward and Rhyse Martin have missed successive games and Liam Sutcliffe, who moved into the pack when they were ruled out, was unavailable to face Salford. It’s not ideal, but Alex Mellor and James Donaldson did a solid job and Alex Sutcliffe’s availability, after a broken hand, has given Agar another option. Ward, Martin and Liam Sutcliffe could all be in contention this week and are automatic members of the 17, but that would mean changing a winning team.

2: Playing for the full-80. Rhinos did well to hit back at Salford after trailing 8-0 in tough conditions. Their first half performance was poor though; they made too many errors coming out of their end and there were some defensive lapses. The final 40 was much-improved, but they will need to be better from the start against a talented Warrington side.

3: Wing dilemma. Tom Briscoe is stepping up training as he recovers from an anterior cruciate ligament injury. He could be available next month, but his younger brother Luke has been very good in the last two games and will be hard to displace.

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Luke Briscoe. Picture by Jonathan Gawthorpe.

4: Richie Myler. Luke Gale’s arrival cost Myler the number seven jersey and Leeds made it clear they wouldn’t stand in his way if an opportunity arose at another club, but Myler’s attitude has been first class and he is making a real impact off the bench. With Kruise Leeming out long-term, Myler remains an influential figure in Leeds’ squad.

5: Consistency. Successive wins is encouraging, particularly after the dismal performance in round one, but consistency is the key. The last time Rhinos beat Super League opposition in three successive games was at the end of 2017. With two home matches coming up, Leeds have an opportunity to go on a run and if they can be four wins from five it will have been a good start to the year.

Luke Gale's try on the stroke of half-time got Rhinos back in the game at Salford. Picture by Steve Riding.
Richie Myler. Picture by Bruce Rollinson.