Salford Red Devils 12 Leeds Rhinos 38: Why Rhinos coach Richard Agar is proud of his players
BOSS RICHARD Agar was proud of his international contingent’s contribution to Leeds Rhinos’ 38-12 win at Salford Red Devils yesterday.
Half-backs Kruise Leeming and Luke Gale and middles Mikolaj Oledzki and Matt Prior all backed up, just two days after playing in the mid-season Test between England and Combined Nations All Stars.
The quartet made a big impact in Leeds’ second successive Betfred Super League win, which came in a stormy game marred by two red and three yellow cards.
Leeming played the full 80 minutes, out of position and Agar described all the effort from four as “massive”. He said: “Considering we lost Bodene Thompson to a sending off and Konrad Hurrell to a head injury, we’ve done it with 15 men.
“We wanted to try and take care of those boys as much as we could, but they rocked up quite easily.
“When you’re reduced to 12 and 11 men, the speed and running metres will go up. It was tough, backing up within 48 hours and we also play this Thursday and then again on Monday.
“It is a fairly challenging situation and I don’t think, as a sport, we should be getting ourselves into positions like this.”
It was Rhinos’ first game since their big win at Castleford a month ago today. Agar added: “We have still got some catching up to do, because of the start we’ve had to the year, but we do feel - particularly when we get our strongest team on the field - we can be a really strong team.
“But we know we are going to get challenged, physically, injury-wise and potentially even suspension-wise, after this.”