Leeds Rhinos v Wakefield Trinity - all you need to know about Thursday's Super League derby

Leeds Rhinos and Wakefield Trinity will trek to St Helens on Thursday for their first derby meeting of the season.

Wednesday, 28th October 2020, 1:54 pm
Trinity winger Ben Jones-Bishop was a try scorer for Leeds in the 2012 Grand Final. Picture by Steve Riding.

Trinity are in resurgent form after back-to-back wins and will fancy their chances against a Leeds side who struggled to overcome 12-man Castleford Tigers on Monday.

Here’s all the essential information about what is a must-win game for Rhinos’ play-offs ambitions.

Fixture: Leeds Rhinos v Wakefield Trinity.

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At: TW Stadium St Helens (Rhinos ‘home’ game).

On: Thursday, October 29.

Kick-off: 5.30pm.

Coverage: Sky Sports.

Tickets: No admission for fans - the game will be played behind closed doors.

Trinity coach: Lifelong Wakefield fan Chris Chester, 42, replaced Brian Smith as team boss four years ago. A former Hull KR player and coach, Chester also played for Halifax, Wigan and Hull.

Trinity star man: Trinity’s left-winger Tom Johnstone is the most exciting finisher in Betfred Super League and one of the competition’s hottest properties. Capable of squeezing over the line from a tight angle or racing the length of the field, the Stanningley product is an excitement machine.

Key battle: It should be a fascinating contest in the three-quarters. Ben Jones-Bishop and Reece Lyne were outstanding for Trinity against Hull KR last Sunday, but Rhinos also have in-form players on that flank in Ash Handley and Liam Sutcliffe.

Form: Wakefield climbed off the foot of Betfred Super League when they beat thrashed spoon rivals Hull KR 48-18 last Sunday. After 10 successive defeats, that was their second successive win following an 18-14 victory over Huddersfield Giants three days earlier. Rhinos are aiming to back up from an important victory over Castleford Tigers on Monday. Though they have lost three of their last five Super League fixtures, Leeds are unbeaten since mid-August in games when they have fielded their strongest-available side.

Previous meeting: June 7, 2019. Betfred Super League round 17. Wakefield Trinity 0, Leeds Rhinos 10 (Try Lolohea. Goals L Sutcliffe 3). Referee: Robert Hicks. Attendance: 5,489.

Last five results: Rhinos WLWLW, Trinity LLLWW

Previous game: Leeds Rhinos 28, Castleford Tigers 24 (Monday, October 26, at Emerald Headingley), Wakefield Trinity 48, Hull KR 18 (Sunday, October 25, at Mobile Rocket Stadium, Belle Vue).

Milestones: Rhinos’ Richie Myler needs four points to reach 500 in Super League.

Facing his former club: Trinity winger Ben Jones-Bishop began his career at Rhinos. Rhinos coach Richard Agar and assistant James Webster both had spells in charge of Trinity.

Super League head to head: Leeds won 39, Wakefield won 10, one draw. Wakefield highest score: 44-28 (away, 2005, widest margin: 38-6 home 2017); Leeds highest score: 70-6 (away 2005, also widest margin).

Team news: Rhinos coach Richard Agar has named an unchanged 21, so will select from the 17 who beat Castleford Tigers on Monday, plus Jack Walker, Luke Briscoe, Alex Sutcliffe and Tom Holroyd. Trinity are without Tony Gigot (elbow) and Matty Ashurst (ankle) from the side which beat Hull KR on Sunday. Captain Jacob Miller could return from injury and Joe Westerman, Jack Croft, Yusuf Adin, Connor Bailey and Innes Senior are also in contention for a recall.

Rhinos injuries: Harry Newman (broken leg), Stevie Ward (head), Adam Cuthbertson (shoulder).

Leeds Rhinos: from J Walker, T Briscoe, Hurrell, Handley, Lui, Gale, Seumanufagai, Leeming, Prior, Mellor, Martin, Dwyer, L Sutcliffe, Myler, Oledzki, Thompson, Smith, L Briscoe, Donaldson, A Sutcliffe, Holroyd.

Wakefield Trinity: from Johnstone, Tupou, Lyne, Jones-Bishop, Miller, Fifita, K Wood, Arona, Westerman, Batchelor, Tangata, Crowther, Jowitt,, Croft, B Walker, Hampshire, Aydin, Bailey, Tanginoa, Senior, Battye.

Referee: Ben Thaler (Wakefield).

Next game: Wakefield Trinity v Leeds Rhinos, Sunday, November 1, at Mobile Rocket Stadium, Belle Vue (2pm).

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