Leeds Rhinos: Brett Delaney’s delight at his injury comeback

Brett Delaney.
Brett Delaney.
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LEEDS RHINOS forward Brett Delaney has reported no ill-effects from his long-awaited return to action.

Delaney was among the substitutes in Rhinos’ 32-16 win over Wigan Warriors, after missing 10 games due to ligament damage in both knees suffered against Warrington Wolves in May.

Brett Delaney celebrates 'Stevie Ward's second try against Wigan.

Brett Delaney celebrates 'Stevie Ward's second try against Wigan.

“I thoroughly enjoyed it,” Delaney said of his comeback.

“I have been out a long while, it was a long time to watch with a freaky injury.

“It was good and positive to get through that game and come out of it good.”

Delaney was brought off the bench in the first half and had a second spell in the closing stages.

He added: “The lungs felt good. I’d only really trained a week and a half, running, but I felt decent out there.

“I’ve looked after myself these 10 weeks, my diet and stuff like that. It was pleasing.”

Rhinos’ win avenged a 34-0 defeat, with an under-strength side, at Wigan 14 days earlier.

They remain second in the Betfred Super-8s table, but are now six points ahead of fifth-placed Salford Red Devils with six games to play.

The top-four after the seven additional fixtures will contest the semi-finals and Delaney was as happy with last Friday’s result as his own comeback.

“Wigan are a great side,” he said. “It is always good to come back against a big physical side.

“I could not have asked for a better game to come back in and it was a great response from our boys, I thought, after last week.

“Everyone was disappointed from the Challenge Cup semi-final, but we picked ourselves up and put a good performance in so it was pleasing.”

Soon after coming on Delaney found himself in possession inside Leeds’ half, with a clear run to the line.

“I thought ‘oh God’,” he said. “I couldn’t believe it – I thought ‘what’s going on here’?

“The first thing I did was look around for someone and no one was there, just a bunch of Wigan players.

“I think I ran about 10 metres and got caught. We’ll look at the video, I know that – everyone will be laughing when we review it!”

Delaney’s aim now is to play regularly and help Leeds through to the Grand Final in two months’ time.

“There’s six games to go so it’s not over yet,” he said. “They are all going to be difficult games against good sides.

“We want to keep going and take a top-four spot. We are in a good position, but we can’t take our foot off the gas and rely on other teams to lose. We need to keep winning and doing our job and it will take care of itself.”

Meanwhile, Rhinos are giving a trial to French winger Nittim Pedrero and scrum-half Theo Guinguet from Racing Club Albi. The pair, who played for Rhinos under-19s in a 68-30 defeat at Warrington Wolves, have been recommended by Albi coach Eric Anselme who had a spell at Rhinos as a player nine years ago.