YEP Jury: Brad Dwyer delivers again as Leeds Rhinos avoid banana skin in some style

Our panel of fans look back at Leeds Rhinos’ comfortable victory at Leigh Centurions which came at a cost with two more serious injuries and a suspension.

By Steve Heptinstall
Wednesday, 18th August 2021, 4:30 pm
Leeds Rhinos' Brad Dwyer celebrates scoring at Leigh Centurions. Picture: Paul Currie/SWpix.com.
Leeds Rhinos' Brad Dwyer celebrates scoring at Leigh Centurions. Picture: Paul Currie/SWpix.com.

KATIE BURROWS

The first half gave indications that last Friday night’s game would be a case of same old, same old – sloppy passes and yet more injuries to key play makers had me thinking it wasn’t going to be our night.

Leigh were very much still in the game at half-time, with us only having a four-point advantage. Fortunately, our second-half performance was much better, and we started to show what we are capable of in attack, despite still missing a number of first-choice players. Kruise Leeming did a great job, after he was forced into the halves, and Brad Dwyer was fantastic again, as was Morgan Gannon.

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Leeds Rhinos' Rhyse Martin kicks a goal at Leigh. Picture: Paul Currie/SWpix.com.

Luke Gale’s injury is a huge blow, and hopefully Konrad Hurrell’s isn’t long term, but it doesn’t sound promising. It’ll be tough to hold on to sixth spot, especially with such a depleted side, but our remaining fixtures – Wigan and Saints aside – aren’t too scary.

Tomorrow night is set to be an emotional one, with Rob Burrow being the guest of honour for our game against Huddersfield. Let’s do Rob proud and make it a special night for him and his family.

GAVIN MILLER

When is a win not a win? Well perhaps over a team bottom of the league without a win all season but losing two key players to yet more injuries and one more player to yet another ban.

Zane Tetevano celebrates scoring Leeds Rhinos' first try at Leigh. Picture: Paul Currie/SWpix.com.

It was routine at Leigh, they really aren’t a good side and a Leeds team with key injuries and youngsters playing managed to put on over 40 points. If relegation is scrapped this year then Leigh really need to go some to improve and be competitive in Super League.

Good news, we are up to sixth thanks to a win percentage of 50 per cent and a superior points difference to Hull.

Bad news is injuries, after suffering at the start of the season rather than getting the luck we used to under Brian McDermott we head into the business end of the season depleted.

Huddersfield Giants tomorrow night at Headingley – I’m isolating so I can’t attend – is now a big game.

Leeds Rhinos' Tom Briscoe touches down at Leigh. Picture: Paul Currie/SWpix.com.

We need to keep our win percentage up and put more points on the board.

It will be a cobbled-together team but Ian Watson’s Huddersfield have lost 12 of their 18 games, so it is a big chance for Leeds.

CHRISTINE KIDD

A good win against Leigh last Friday was marred by a season-ending injury to Luke Gale and a one-match ban for Rhyse 
Martin.

The way things are going, we’ll be lucky to find 21 players for the squad this week.

It’s good to see Rob Lui back out on the field and it’s a shame that we haven’t seen more of him and Gale playing together this season. On Friday, Kruise Leeming stepped into the halves once more.

Brad Dwyer scored a superb try in the second half and Leeds won the game easily in the end.

Tomorrow night’s game against Huddersfield Giants is going to be an emotional experience with guest of honour Robbie Burrow in attendance.

Let’s hope the Rhinos can honour his presence by producing another winning experience.

This will depend on which 17 players are fit and able to play. If Leeds are to keep up their chase for the top-six, this is a must win game. The Giants have been a bit up and down lately so, hopefully, we’ll get an entertaining game with the Rhinos gaining another win.

ADAM ANDERSON

Last week was a chance to get back into the play-off frame against Leigh Centurions and I’m glad the lads took the chance, although it came at a cost, with the injuries to Luke Gale and Konrad Hurrell.

We now know Luke will be out for six weeks but might stand a chance of returning before the end of the season while Konrad Hurrell is in a similar situation – so we might have seen him for the last time in a Leeds shirt.

Tomorrow we come up against a Huddersfield Giants team who have started to get on a roll.

It’ll be tough but, hopefully, the lads can get another win under their belt and push for a play-off spot.

The injury situation has really taken its toll on us this season. Without the injuries and Covid, I feel we would have been further up the table.

Fingers crossed that we don’t have the same situation in 2022 and can be up at the top again.

MATT FOWLER

A good win and, to be fair, an expected win against Leigh on Friday night saw us into the play-off spots.

The key now is to try and embed ourselves there with more wins and consistent performances. One thing that did shock me about Friday and, to be fair, has since we returned to open stadiums, is the attendance. Less than 3,000 were in attendance and every club, with perhaps the exception being Hull KR, are down significantly on people through the door.

No doubt Covid and people’s hesitancy to be around large crowds will be playing a part but is the product on the pitch also a factor?

Judging by social media reaction during and after games I would say ‘yes’. The six-again rule change has not worked in my opinion.

The game didn’t need speeding up and has just caused confusion. Players being flogged with a congested schedule has also reduced the quality on show.

Add the uncertainty on league formats, win percentages and a postponed World Cup, I fear the game is in a downward spiral that shows no sign of abating.

IAN SHARP

A banana skin avoided and a few good points on the board from last week’s win at Leigh, but it looks like it came at quite a price, with Luke Gale going off and having left the ground in a brace.

When Konny Hurrell was hardly able to walk and was still left on the pitch, I thought Brian Mac was back at the coaching helm!

Yet again, we did look lost at times in attack, and we seemed to make hard work overpowering a side that are winless but have a great team spirit. I still don’t think that we will progress any further under Richard Agar’s leadership, but who do you bring in, is the $64,000 question.

I was gutted for Rhyse Martin, missing the conversion and losing his 34 in a row, but now he can start again I guess.

He’s one player we need to get pen to paper and sign up for a few more years at the club.

Back at home tomorrow and up against a Giants team that are very well coached, but, like us, can blow hot and cold.

It could be a tight match, but one we need to win if we have any ambitions of being in the play-offs.

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