Luke Briscoe delighted with Leeds Rhinos personal best - future future remains undecided

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His future is up in the air, but Luke Briscoe is enjoying his best season so far with Leeds Rhinos.

The 27-year-old is in the final year of his contract and a decision on 2022 has yet to be made.

Wednesday’s 14-0 win at Wigan Warriors was Rhinos’ 21st competitive game of the campaign and Briscoe has played in 19 of them, mainly as a winger, but also filling in as an emergency forward at times.

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His previous personal best was 14 appearances, last year and, reflecting on the campaign so far, he said: “It’s the most I’ve played in a year for Leeds, so I am definitely happy.

Luke Briscoe hits his stride in Rhinos' win over Wigan. Picture by Paul Currie/ Briscoe hits his stride in Rhinos' win over Wigan. Picture by Paul Currie/
Luke Briscoe hits his stride in Rhinos' win over Wigan. Picture by Paul Currie/

“I am just building on each performance and I was definitely happy with [Wednesday’s] performance.”

Briscoe made his Leeds debut in 2014 and has twice returned to the club after spells elsewhere, with Hunslet and Featherstone Rovers. Of where he will be plying his trade next year, he admitted: “I have no idea yet.

“I am just in talks with a couple of clubs, but I’ve not got a clue yet.”

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Leeds Rhinos coach Richard Agar comments on yellow cards shown to Zane Tetevano ...

He was shown a yellow card for allegedly not standing square at marker as Wigan tried to take a quick play-the-ball in front of Rhinos’ posts in the first half, when the visitors were already down to 12 men with Zane Tetevano also having been temporarily dismissed.

It seemed a tough call, but Briscoe insisted: “It’s the referee’s decision. It’s one of those, we went down to 11 men for a couple of sets, but the boys defended well and still kept them to zero, which is massive.”

Wigan tapped the penalty, but couldn’t find a way through Rhinos’ defence, even with two extra men.

That set the platform for Leeds’ eventual clean sheet and Briscoe said: “It shows how together we are as a team.

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“The brotherhood we’ve got is massive and that’s what we pride ourselves on, sticking together – that’s how we play.” He added: “Keeping Wigan to zero was a big effort from our defence, which we pride ourselves on.

“To do it at their own ground was a massive bonus for us.”

It was the first time Briscoe had been on the winning side away to Wigan and he described it as a “massive” result in their battle to secure a top-six finish in Betrfed Super League.

“We were told afterwards we’d not won there in seven years, so it was good to get the win,” he said.

Leeds had to cope with a late reshuffle when Callum McLelland was ruled out because of sickness the day before the game.

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Briscoe conceded: “It has been like that all year, we haven’t had consistency in most positions.

“Every week there’s someone different in there, whether it’s in the halves, on an edge or in the middle, so just to come away with a win is good for us.”

The win keeps Rhinos well in the hunt for play-off qualification. “That’s our aim,” Briscoe pledged. “We want to be up there, fighting for those top spots.

“We’re relying on some other results as well, but we’ll get there.”

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Leeds are back in action in three days’ time, at Wakefield Trinity. Looking ahead, Briscoe said: “There’s been a couple of weeks with short turnarounds, we’ll just rest and recover and go again on Monday.

“It’s another game and we’ll go for the win. We are getting used to it now [short turnarounds], it’s just a consistent ‘Easter’ period for us. We’ll just crack on, get on with it and play as we do.”

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