HALF-BACK Danny McGuire has taken Leeds Rhinos’ second defeat of the season on the chin.
McGuire handed full credit to Wigan Warriors for their 18-14 victory at the Magic Weekend, despite them having two players – Michael McIlorum and John Bateman – sin-binned, along with Rhinos’ Ryan Bailey, following one of a series of first-half skirmishes. Wigan prop Dominic Crosby was placed on report for a possible dangerous tackle on Leeds winger Ryan Hall, but McGuire insisted: “It was a good battle.
“We knocked 10 bells out of each other for 80 minutes and that’s how it should be.
“We are playing rugby league, we’re not messing about. Both teams were trying to win and they came fired up and probably shocked us a bit in the first five or 10 minutes.
“They got stuck in and fair play to them. It was really enjoyable, both teams knocking each other about – it was entertaining for the crowd and it’s good fun when you are out there.”
McGuire added: “Credit to them. I thought they played well and probably deserved it. They’ve got some young lads and they didn’t take a backwards step.
“I was pretty impressed with them, but we stuck in there in the second half and made a good go of it. We could probably have snatched it at the end, but it wasn’t to be.
“It was a good game and good to be part of it, but we just didn’t get the result.”
Rhinos thought they had levelled the scores in the final moments of the game when Joel Moon touched down, but video referee Phil Bentham ruled he had knocked-on from Kevin Sinfield’s kick.
“It was one of those that could go either way,” McGuire said. “Sometimes they go for you and sometimes they go against you, so you’ve just got to crack on with it.
“We’ve no complaints. We had a few chances in that second half, but fair play to them, they scrambled well and covered up and saved a lot of tries.”
St Helens’ 41-24 defeat to Warrington Wolves in last night’s final match in the Etihad Stadium means Rhinos remain top of the First Utility Super League table.