YEP Jury: Leeds Rhinos need more of the same after giant step forward at Huddersfield
Our fans’ panel look back on a morale-boosting 44-0 victory for Leeds Rhinos at Huddersfield Giants and the task ahead at home to Catalans Dragons on Friday.
IT was back to Super League action last week and all eyes were on Friday’s game at Huddersfield Giants.
Questions like which Leeds would take the field and had the week off helped? The answers were both positive and we did ourselves a massive favour. Not only did we get two precious points, we improved our points difference impressively.
Solid defence coupled with a strong attack saw us win comfortably. Big games from all who played including the unstoppable Konrad Hurrell and Adam Cuthbertson who is rolling back the years.
The only sour note was the injury to Tom Briscoe which is season ending. Hopefully the other walking wounded will be fine come Friday’s game.
So can we back up this performance? Well it’s Catalans again on Friday and the chance to keep ourselves out of danger.
We now know the outcome of the disciplinary from their last game and the disgraceful scenes against Warrington which led to two players being banned. Which version of Catalans will we face? If we concentrate on our own game we should be fine.
I am proud of the team for that performance against Huddersfield.
After 15 minutes there was only one winner and to score 44 unanswered points away from home to a relegation rival is a very good result. The atmosphere in the away end was very good all game. I am gutted to see Tom Briscoe getting injured, however. I hope we have enough cover until the end of the season.
Konrad Hurrell had his best game of the season and we played some lovely attacking rugby league. Our defence was very good especially in the first half. Richard Agar did get his team selection correct especially with Shaun Lunt starting and Brad Dwyer coming off the bench to give some massive impact.
We better not be complacent on Friday night, especially with Catalans Dragons having two important players banned. It will not be an easy game especially after their convincing win over Warrington. We need to build on the momentum from Huddersfield and a similar result to the one in late June when we last played them will be ideal.
I don’t think we’ll get many more performances like the one at Huddersfield Giants for the remainder of the season.
I felt incredibly nervous going into this game and was still nervous until Brad Dwyer crossed to score.
We were ruthless in attack and very resilient in defence. Even towards the end of the game, the defensive efforts were as good as in the first 25 minutes.
The middle was very strong and we made Huddersfield look clueless at times. I was much happier to see our completion rate into the 80s and I hope this can continue into the coming week.
I think our backs won us the game as any breaks from Adam Cuthberson or Konrad Hurrell were very swiftly supported by Ash Handley and Jack Walker (who I thought was our man of the match).
Hurrell was used better than in any game this season and I’d like to extend my personal best wishes to his sister and wish her a swift recovery.
The Catalans Dragons is a big game for us as there is a worrying gap forming in the mid-table.
I would have been happy with Leeds just winning at Huddersfield, I would have been delighted with a win by eight points to take us above them, but I was elated with last Friday’s outstanding 44-0 win and the performance that went with it that was reflective of the dominant scoreline.
Eighth place sounds like a pretty good place to be sitting given our recent fortunes, but one bad performance can make us vulnerable again and we have a great opportunity to back up last week’s emphatic win tomorrow night.
As I said last week, performances are improving and our only recent bad performance was against Hull KR, I just hope we don’t take our foot off the gas on Friday night – Catalans are coming to Headingley without some key players so we have a great opportunity to post two more points on the board, but it is ultimately our responsibility to perform. Unfortunately, we did not do this against Hull KR, but if we can learn from that and make sure that recent performance levels are maintained on Friday then I am confident that we will be two points better off and closer to that feeling of safety.
If we do manage to stay up this season I think we might look back on the win over Huddersfield Giants as the decisive moment.
There hasn’t been many good performances to pick from this year, but that has to rank as the best so far.
It is difficult to say which is the bigger positive, scoring over 40 points, or not conceding a single one.
There have been games where we have defended well, but as a team, that was very good. Huddersfield had quite a lot of pressure in the first 20 minutes, but the lads stood firm, defended in numbers and got bodies in the way any time they tried to get the ball over.
Fortune seemed to be smiling on us with the news that Catalans could have five big players suspended for Friday’s game.
I saw some ridiculous things written about the RFL being harsh because they are due to play Leeds! The result of Tuesday’s disciplinary set that straight.
I would like to end by wishing Tom Briscoe and Sophie Robinson all the best following bad injuries.
It’s a shame we haven’t been able to produce many performances like the Huddersfield one this year but, as is often the case with us, we seem to be coming good at the right time.
Losses for London and Wakefield did us some favours, but Hull KR’s golden point drop-goal means there are still four teams on 18 points with only five games of the regular season to go.
I was impressed with Shaun Lunt’s contribution and Rhyse Martin is improving with each game – his kicking was very good on Friday and making six out of eight conversions will surely boost his confidence going forwards.
Two Catalans players will serve bans this week and they will be without several key playmakers for our game. We will also be without the injured Tom Briscoe, who will miss the rest of the season, which is a real shame.
You’d expect Luke Briscoe to feature this week in Tom’s place, although there’s every possibility Liam Sutcliffe will fill in for the last few games. Either way, I am predicting another Rhinos win as we look to secure our Super League safety.