Leeds Rhinos: Liam Tindall keen to prove himself in Super League after loan stint at Doncaster

Youngster Liam Tindall has pledged to make a positive impact after returning to Leeds Rhinos from a spell on loan.

By Peter Smith
Wednesday, 22nd December 2021, 4:45 am

Tindall played three times for Rhinos in 2020 and once as a substitute this year before spending the final three months of the campaign with Betfred League One part-timers Doncaster, where former Leeds assistant-coach Chris Plume is on the backroom staff.

The 20-year-old has been included in Rhinos’ squad for next season, retaining the number 29 jersey,

And Tindall reckons experience with Doncaster - even two levels down from Super League - has boosted his confidence and prospects of making a breakthrough into Leeds’ senior side.

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Liam Tindall. Picture by Tony Johnson.

Tindall developed a reputation for scoring spectacular tries as Doncaster finished fifth in the table and reached the promotion final, before losing to Workington Town.

“It was really good I was getting the full 80 minutes every week, which I hadn’t had in a while,” he said of his time in South Yorkshire.

“Playing at full-back, I was a bit out of position, but what that meant was I had more demands on me so it made me improve my game.

“I had to do more and had more responsibilities, so it improved the other side of my game, that I wasn’t that good at before.”

Liam Tindall made his Rhinos debut against Catalans in September last year. Picture by Bruce Rollinson.

Tindall, a product of the East Leeds community club, reflected: “They are a good set of lads, the coaching staff are brilliant and I did get some good tries.

“It helped me to show people what I could do, because I’d been on the sidelines all season.

“I was in 21-man squads [for Rhinos], but not playing, so to get that time was good.

“I felt appreciated and it was motivating for me, to see I can do it and I am good at rugby still.

“It gave me confidence going forward and it was a good time there.”

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Despite impressing as a full-back in the third tier, Tindall regards wing as his best position.

He confirmed: “Going forward I definitely see myself as a winger.

“Maybe I can fill in at full-back, but not first-choice - I do prefer wing.

“Being at full-back meant I got my hands on the ball more and I could do more for the team than I could on the wing, but another good thing was showing I can play in another position.”

After his frustrating spell on the sidelines this year, Tindall’s “number one goal” for 2022 is more game time with Rhinos.

“Beneath that would be to maybe go on loan to a Championship side and get some good rugby in there,” he added.

“But first of all I am thinking, like you have got to really, about showing I can play first team.

“They have just signed a new winger [Tonga international David Fusitu’], but I am not letting that knock me back.

“Things happen, injuries come about and Covid so I am prepping myself this pre-season like I will be playing.”

Tindall has been in training since the start of pre-season last month and is included in Rhinos’ initial 22-man squad for the Boxing Day visit of Wakefield Trinity.

“It’s going well,” Tindall said of the opening weeks of pre-season.

“It is tough work, but it’s when you can show how hard you are willing to work and show the coaches what you can do.”

Coach Richard Agar will reduce his squad to 19 before Sunday’s kick-off and Tindall stressed: “I am hoping to get some game time.

“Nothing’s guaranteed, I don’t know if I’ll be playing or not yet, but I have got the mentality and I’ll be prepping like I will be playing.

“I am hoping I do get that game time, because it would be the first time I’ve played in a somewhat full-strength squad. When I played in 2020 it wasn’t a full-strength side, it had a lot of young players in, so this would be the first time.”

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