Coach Lois Forsell says Headingley is 'massive motivation' for Leeds Rhinos in Women's Super League Grand Final showdown against St Helens
Leeds Rhinos are determined to make the most of home advantage in Sunday’s Betfred Women’s Super League Grand Final against St Helens, coach Lois Forsell says.
It is the first time the women’s title decider has been staged in Leeds and Forsell admitted that gave her side “extra motivation” in their semi-final against York City Knights.
“It is nice to be there,” Forsell stressed.
“But we will be in the away changing rooms because Saints finished top and they will be boosted by [playing at Headingley] as well.
“They are playing at one of the best stadiums in the world, so it is a massive motivation for both sets of players, but obviously I am hoping we can pack some Leeds Rhinos fans in and well be able to hear them loudly from the sidelines.”
Sunday will be Rhinos’ third successive Grand Final, after a narrow loss to Wigan Warriors in 2018 and win over Castleford Tigers the following year.
Saints are unbeaten on the field in 2021 and inflicted Rhinos’ only defeat, in a Challenge Cup semi-final.
“We’ve had to adapt to and cope with the things that have been thrown at us by Covid,” Forsell recalled.
“It has been massively different this year and there’s been some disruption in that I was off on maternity leave for a while and the twins [David and Anthony Gibbons] held down the fort then.
“The girls have been second to none in getting their head down and staying focused on the job at hand.
"They have been really good and it’s just reward playing in a final at Headingley.”
This is Forsell’s first season as coach and she reckons it has been a learning curve for the whole squad.
“We’ve learned a lot about each other this season and the girls have got a lot closer,” she said.
“We have got a lot of new girls in our squad, a big group of them are in their first year, having come through our academy or on trial and they’ve done really well.
“It will be absolutely massive if we can win it.
"The girls have really bought in this year, we’ve done it tough - with a lot of injuries - and we know we are playing for each other and for everyone who has backed us.
“I don’t think there’s any better showcase for the women’s game or any better occasion.”
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