Leeds Rhinos v Catalans Dragons: Patience is the key for livewire hooker Brad Dwyer

Brad Dwyer celebrates scoring against Huddersfield Giants.
Brad Dwyer celebrates scoring against Huddersfield Giants.
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LIVEWIRE HOOKER Brad Dwyer insists he isn’t bothered what role he is handed for tomorrow’s visit of Catalans Dragons, as long as he makes an impact.

After 10 successive games in the starting side, Dwyer was used off the bench during the 44-0 win at Huddersfield Giants a week ago and Shaun Lunt took over in the run-on team.

Shaun Lunt.  Picture: Tony Johnson.

Shaun Lunt. Picture: Tony Johnson.

Dwyer responded by scoring a try moments after being introduced and was heavily involved in Leeds’ most complete performance of the season so far.

“Lunty is a great player so if he is going well that is going to take minutes away,” Dwyer said. “It is just about trying to stay patient and make an impact when I come on.

“I do feel like that comes naturally to me, so it’s just about controlling it and doing what’s best for the team. I don’t mind if I come off the bench or if I am starting. It is nice to start, but at the moment – the situation we are in – it’s what’s best for the team.”

Dwyer admitted it is a different role as a substitute.

Brad Dwyer celebrates with Trent Merrin.

Brad Dwyer celebrates with Trent Merrin.

“I probably learned that from the last couple of games I started,” he reflected.

“Probably the reason I was on the bench was because the starts weren’t that great and I was coming up with errors.

“At the start of the game you can’t win a game, but you can probably lose it with how you set the tone.

“That’s a progression for me, learning that as a starting nine.

“When you come off the bench the team is probably in a bit of emotion, whether that’s good or bad.

“If you are in a bad place it’s easier to make an impact, but if you are going well there’s a bit of pressure to keep that going.”

Rhinos will move four points clear of the relegation zone, for a day at least, if they can repeat the sort of effort they put in last week and complete back-to-back wins.

“The big thing for us is our starts,” Dwyer said.

“If we start well it puts us in a good spot.

“The start wasn’t too bad last week, but we’ve still got some improvements in us and that’s what we’ll be looking to do this week.

“Hopefully we can get a bit of a roll on here at Headingley because the fans have been great all year.

“They keep turning up and watching us and we want to show them we have progressed quite a bit.”

Last Friday’s solid defensive effort was backed up by a clinical attacking display which produced eight tries and they will be looking to carry on from where they left off in both departments, according to Dwyer.

“The defence was really pleasing, because that’s an attitude thing,” he said.

“You can’t get into a rhythm or have certain players who do that for you, you have to get your attitude right and that’s what we are doing at the moment.

“That is good and we scored a couple of tries through our defence.

“The new guys, Rob [Lui] and Rhyse [Martin] are settling in so that’s pleasing.”

Injuries and suspensions mean Catalans are without four players who featured in their 30-10 victory over second-placed Warrington Wolves last Saturday.

But they have won three of their four games since a defeat at Headingley in June and Dwyer warned: “The last time we played them they came here and it was one of the better performances they’ve put in over the last month or so.

“They can be a bit hit and miss with their form, but they have got good players and they’ve had a couple of good results.

“We will be preparing for the best Catalans, but – same as always – we have got a lot of focus on what we are going to deliver and we’re not too focusing too much on the opposition.”

Catalans are fifth in the table, just two points behind third-placed Hull and a similar distance ahead of Salford Red Devils and Castleford Tigers.

So they have something to play for and Dwyer reckons that will be the case every week, at one end of the table or the other. It’s really competitive at the moment,” he noted.

“That’s the way we want it to be. In previous years at this point we’ve had teams who know they are going to be in the bottom four or they are in the top eight and they can’t really make the play-offs so games could be a bit of a dead rubber.

“We aren’t where we want to be, we have got a fight on our hands and it is making every game really interesting at the moment.”