Leeds Rhinos: Best still to come says Ablett

Carl Ablett
Carl Ablett
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DESPITE FOUR successive wins, Carl Ablett admits Leeds Rhinos have yet to produce a full 80-minute performance.

Rhinos, who travel to Warrington Wolves in two days’ time, are top of the First Utility Super League table, but Ablett says they have only shown flashes of their best form.

“Four rounds in it’s probably the same for most teams,” said the second-row forward.

“I don’t think anybody can sit back and say they’ve had a good 80 minutes yet. It is just about building and trying to get that.”

Rhinos trailed 12-0 at half-time of their game at Hull last Thursday, then ran in 43 unanswered points in the second period.

Ablett said: “Obviously it was a disappointing first 40, but then to score that many points against a decent Hull side was encouraging. We will have to be even better against Warrington. We know we can’t start like we did in the last game and give them that much ball.

“You can’t do that too many times and have to be chasing

“We showed some great character last week and our energy levels in the second half were very good and that’s testament to the way we’re being looked after.

“To come out like that after doing so much defending in the first half and to have that much energy and to create that much momentum, it was a big effort from the boys.”

Ablett reckons there are lessons to be learned from last week’s performance and the way Rhinos turned things around.

He said: “We didn’t get chance to be good in the first half. We conceded penalties and made errors.

“It was just one of those halves. Possession was heavily in their favour and I think we were happy at 12-0 down, for them to have had so much ball and us only concede two tries, one off a kick and another that was probably my fault.

“I should have made that tackle so I was disappointed in that, but we thought we could turn it around. We went in at half-time and changed a few things and had a few words and then we went out and scored in the first set. That set a good tone for the second half. We jumped on the back of that and created some great momentum and we went on and scored some great tries.”

Rhinos are Super League’s top scorers and ran in seven tries in their second half blitz. Ablett said: “That’s a good effort, especially against Hull.

“They have played really well and they were up there with the top two defensive records after three games, so they are no mugs defensively. In the first half they did pressure us into a few errors, but the second half really showed the quality we have. We were promoting the ball and it is hard to live with at times. We’ve got some special players who can do some special things. We just need to capture more of that. If we get 50 per cent of the ball, if we get an even split, then we are pretty confident.”

Leeds Rhinos under-19s, meanwhile, will tackle Bradford Bulls at Odsal tomorrow (7.30pm).

Ryan Hall in action during the Rugby League World Cup. PIC: PA

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