YEP Jury: It was scrappy, but Leeds Rhinos got the job done in derby opener
Our fans’ panel have their say on Leeds Rhinos’ derby victory over Wakefield Trinity and look ahead to Friday’s clash with Castleford Tigers.
Whilst it’s not the same watching at home, it’s so good to have rugby league back, and I thought last weekend’s fixtures really showcased the sport, especially Leigh versus Wigan and Catalans Dragons against Hull KR.
It wasn’t the best Leeds Rhinos performance by a long way, but I think it’s important to start the season with a win, and there were some promising moments.
There’s plenty for the team to work on for this week – I thought our defence, in particular, looked a little too reminiscent of two or three years ago at times, and there was a lot of dropped ball.
I thought Jack Broadbent played really well and was the Rhinos’ man of the match for me.
I’d like to be optimistic for Friday but, in all honesty, we could be in for a bit of a pasting.
Castleford looked strong against Warrington on Sunday, and we’re still missing a few key bodies.
Win or lose, I’ll be hoping the sun is shining so we’re able to enjoy the game in the garden with friends!
What a start to the Super League season with St Helens, as everyone predicted, leading the pack.
The Rhinos line-up was not easy to predict and the back line had a very unfamiliar look.
It was good to see Richie Myler keeping his place at full-back and giving a very good account of himself by setting up two tries and scoring one.
One of the stand-out players was Jack Broadbent, a young academy product who scored a try and then made a brilliant interception to stop Wakefield scoring later in the game.
Cameron Smith also played well, even though he only played the last 30 minutes.
There is a lot of improvement to come but two points to start the season is always welcome.
Friday’s game against Castleford will be a typical derby game with both teams desperate for bragging rights.
The Tigers put on a good show against Warrington and Leeds will have to show some improvement to get anything from the game.
Lady Luck was not on our side for the Challenge Cup draw. Saints away is not going to be easy.
It’s difficult to judge Leeds Rhinos’ performance last weekend.
Plenty of first-choice players missing, new game plans and some youngsters were thrown in for what was the first game of the season.
Positives...winning a game from 16-4 down and some decent performances by a handful of individuals.
Negatives...the bench lacks quality, the wingers looked exposed and a few soft tries were conceded.
So using that favourite saying of many a player ‘we go again’... we go again against a Cas side that also enjoyed a round one victory and as always (unless it’s a Grand Final) will play above themselves against Leeds and will for sure cause us some problems.
I think the best Leeds can do is cope whilst they are missing so many players and come good at the business end of the season.
I’m sure Richard Agar will be working them hard in training and tightening up on a few things and looking at how to negate the threat from Castleford, but again I think it’ll be a matter of coping. For now.
I’d like to start this week by giving congratulations to Ryan Golding and his team of ground staff – including Sherman the pug.
The playing surface and the ground at Headingley looked immaculate for the start of the season. It was a better start than last season against Hull FC and for the first 10 minutes we looked so in control, then Tom Johnstone said “hold my beer” and wow could we have already seen the solo try of the season?
I think Mr Hetherington should send a blank cheque to Wakefield and get him in our team. Zane Tetevano looked good and had some strong carries, as did Bodene Thompson off the bench; in fact the pack had a good first run out, and will only get better. Young Jack Broadbent also impressed and the sublime passes by Richie Myler to set up three tries were pure class.
Is it worth having him play at six or seven with Luke Gale and putting Liam Sutcliffe to full-back? We dodged a bullet last week, better teams would not have let us off the hook.
It’s another local derby on Friday and the one we want to win against a good Cas Tigers side.
It was scrappy, sloppy in places and had plenty of rust on show, but given the personnel in the ranks it was a good win.
The back line was decimated with early-season injuries and with Luke Gale clearly nursing himself through the game I thought parts of our attack were impressive for a round one fixture.
Jack Broadbent really stood out in attack with plenty still to come from him.
Zane Tetevano was also a solid performer and he will only get better and add much needed spite to our pack.
Brad Dwyer again shone when on the field and just needs to cut out the odd brain explosion to become a really top hooker.
Next up is Castleford who had a good win against Warrington.
We will need to be better in every area and hopefully we can have some personnel back to help out.
I am hoping Kyle Eastmond will make his debut to add another dimension to the attack.
We know Cas raise their game every time they play us so we need to come fully fired up and get some form going with Challenge Cup looming large away at Saints.
The first game of the season ended with the two league points in the bag, that’s what we can be happy about.
We learned a lot from that in regards to our wing defence and where we really need to get into gear.
Wakefield took both flanks and carved them down on many occasions.
Jack Broadbent was brilliant but there is still a lot to learn, Richie Myler though was for me the stand-out performer with one try and a few try assists.
If he carries on this way, we will be just fine at full-back.
This week we come up against Castleford Tigers, another team that managed the win in the first week.
We need to be on our game to get another win this week and to have learned from our mistakes.
Elsewhere, the Challenge Cup draw took place on Monday and we got paired up with St Helens.
It’ll be a tough one but winning that would put a huge marker down, especially in the Challenge Cup.
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