BOSS BRIAN McDermott was in happy mood after Leeds Rhinos thrashed Salford Red Devils 44-2 last night.
Rhinos ran in eight tries and kept their goalline intact, Salford’s only points coming from a penalty kick after two minutes.
McDermott was disappointed with the “tempo of the ruck”, but delighted by the way his team ripped Salford apart as the game went on.
He said: “I thought we were great in offense. Salford were pretty tough to start with and had a bit of bite about their defence and we found it hard to break them down.
“We had a tough week last week – very flat in the first half, pretty strong in the second – so to back up and put in a performance like that, I am pleased for the players.
“It is good. I thought the pack were pretty dominant and some of the outside-backs showed what they can do.”
McDermott hailed winger Tom Briscoe, who has bounced back strongly after a poor performance in Leeds’ Ladbrokes Challenge Cup semi-final loss to Hull in July.
“He has answered all the questions,” McDermott said.
“He is not out of the woods, there’s still blood in the water and I am sure teams will still kick to him, but he has shown nerves of steel. That was the best game he’s had for us for, I would say, two years.”
Rhinos prop Adam Cuthbertson suffered a facial injury in the second half.
“He got a poke in the eye, he was in some pain,” McDermott said.
Rhinos will face the team finishing third in the Betfred Super-8s in a sudden-death semi-final at Headingley in 13 days’ time.
Leeds have been beaten only twice on their own turf this year and McDermott said: Our resilience and our strength of character at home has been great.”