Leeds Rhinos: Briscoe is determined to tackle the Kiwis

Tom Briscoe
Tom Briscoe
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LEEDS RHINOS’ in-form winger Tom Briscoe wants to regain his England place.

Briscoe described his omission from last year’s Four Nations squad as “disappointing” and admitted facing New Zealand this autumn is one of his targets.

The 24-year-old, who has touched down in both Rhinos’ opening two Super League matches, confirmed: “After last season, I wanted to improve my performances.

“I think I have done that so far and I’m pretty happy with where I’m at for the start of the season.

“I thought overall I played pretty well last year, but I am looking to improve and move on this season and carry on the way I’ve started.

“I was disappointed I didn’t make the England squad last year and it is one of my aims for the end of the season, but, at the minute, and for the near future I am just concentrating on playing well for Leeds.

“Whatever happens on the back of that is a bonus.”

Briscoe spent six seasons in Hull’s senior team – scoring 90 tries in 147 appearances – before moving to Rhinos at the end of 2013.

He played 31 games in his debut campaign, touching down 13 times, but said it took him a while to settle into a new environment.

“I feel part of it now, having been here a year,” he said. “Going into the start of last season I had about two or three weeks’ pre-season so I didn’t get that contact time with all the lads.

“I had a full pre-season this time and I feel I’ve got a lot of benefits from that, not just physically, but being part of Leeds as well.”

Rhinos’ outside-back division is rated as one of the best in Super League and Briscoe’s right-side combination with centre Kallum Watkins has made a strong start to the year with Watkins also bagging a try in each of the opening two rounds.

“Kallum was one of the draws to come to Leeds,” said Briscoe. “On the back of a year’s experience together, the more we play and train, the better we will become.

“I think having experienced and getting to know Kal’s game last year and during pre-season, the games we’ve had so far have shown we’ve improved in that area.”

Leeds’ left-flank duo, Ryan Hall and Joel Moon, have managed just one try so far and asked if there is rivalry between the two pairings, Briscoe said: “I think if you ask Ryan, there’s certainly a try-scoring competition, but at the minute I just need to concentrate on playing well and doing what I can do for the team.”

Briscoe insisted he hasn’t set a target for the number of tries he’d like to score this year.

“I think there’s more to my game than scoring tries,” he said. “I set targets for each game, other than scoring tries. If I can do what I want to do, then tries or no tries I will be happy with that.”