Leeds Rhinos: Leeds’ ‘millennium man’ Hynes humbled by club acknowledgement

Syd Hynes and former Leeds captain David Ward.
Syd Hynes and former Leeds captain David Ward.
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THANKS FOR remembering me. That’s the message from former Leeds player and coach Syd Hynes following a visit to the city of his birth.

Hynes has jetted back to his home in Perth, Australia, after a week in Leeds, which included a guest appearance at the Leeds Players’ Association’s annual get-together.

The 72-year-old was flown to this country, as a guest of Leeds Rhinos, to receive his heritage certificate, which reveals he was the 1,000th player to turn out for the club.

Hynes, who made 366 appearances for Leeds from 1965-76 and coached them to Wembley victory in 1977 and 1978, said: “It has been great to catch up with everybody.

“I met up with a lot of the lads from my team and people like Roger [Millward] and Heppy [Keith Hepworth].

“It was really humbling and at the [players’] do everyone wanted their picture taken with me – if I had one photo taken, I had 150.”

It was Hynes’ first visit to Leeds for more than four years.

And on the previous occasion Hynes admitted that he feared that he would never see the city of Leeds again, due to a cancer scare.

“Touch wood, I am doing okay. I feel a lot better this time,” said Hynes, who is hoping to be back in three years’ time to mark the 50th anniversary of Leeds’ famous Watersplash Challenge Cup final win over Wakefield Trinity.

Hynes keeps in touch with rugby league in Australia and reckons the NRL still has the edge over Super League, though he was delighted by Rhinos’ treble success this year.

“I was really pleased,” he said. “I couldn’t believe a team [opponents Hull KR] could go to Wembley and get nilled by such a big score, but there were a couple of cracking games, at Huddersfield and against Wigan in the Grand Final. It was good to see.”