Leeds Rhinos coach Richard Agar ‘proud’ as patched-up side triumph

COACH RICHARD Agar was “proud” of his Leeds Rhinos side following last night’s precious 18-12 home win over Huddersfield Giants.

Friday, 20th August 2021, 8:36 am

Rhinos, with 11 senior players unavailable, led 18-4 inside the final 10 minutes before conceding two late tries and Agar felt his team were more dominant than the score suggests.

“I was really proud of it,” Agar said of Rhinos’ performance.

“I thought it was spirited and committed.

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Fitting tribute: Leeds Rhinos players and fans with a Rob Burrow banner at the end of last night's win. Picture: Jonathan Gawthorpe

“Huddersfield are a tough team to break down at times and after the initial exchanges, I thought it was a game we dominated for long periods.

“I am not sure how we ended up with only six points difference on the scoreboard.”

Rhinos legend Rob Burrow, who is battling motor neurone disease, was guest of honour at the game and made a brief appearance at pitchside before kick-off.

Agar felt Burrow’s presence - and an emotional crowd - lifted the home team.

Welcome back: Rhinos legend Rob Burrow and his wife Lindsey on the pitch before the win over Huddersfield. Picture: Jonathan Gawthorpe

“In the tunnel all the boys made a point of going over and seeing him and he certainly inspired the crowd,” Agar said.

“It is great to see young players play so well and I thought the crowd got involved and really played a part.”

One concern was the loss of acting-captain - and stand-in goal kicker - Ash Handley with a groin problem.

“It’s frustrating for him,” Agar admitted.

On top: Rhinos' Rob Lui goes over to score during the win. Picture: Jonathan Gawthorpe

“Brad Dwyer shouldn’t have played. He has been on a sick bed for the last two days.

“He passed his Covid tests, but was really unwell.”

Teenager Levi Edwards, who has been recalled from loan at Batley Bulldogs, was on stand-by, but Dwyer took a place on the bench and played for the final 10 minutes.