YEP Jury: Roll on Magic Weekend after stunning display from Leeds Rhinos

THERE’S AGREEMENT from our Rhinos Jury this week, the win at Hull FC was something special.

The 11-try romp was Leeds’ biggest victory against the Black and Whites and our fans’ panel were delighted for Ash Handley who touched down five times.

There have been false dawns before, but the Jury will be travelling north for the Magic Weekend derby against Castleford Tigers in confident mood.


Ash Handley scores his third try against Hull FC. Picture: Bruce Rollinson.

What a win for the boys on Saturday.

I know Hull FC were quite weak in the pack and very inexperienced in the backs, but we took advantage.

After going 20 points ahead, we could have stayed back and played it safe but, instead, took full advantage of what was in front of us.

A big shout-out to Ash Handley for scoring five tries for us. It was fully deserved as he has been the most consistent all season. Also, to Kruise Leeming who had a blinder all game, being involved in every play to gain us a try. The main advantage from the game, I would have to say, is improving the points difference in our favour, which could be crucial at the end of the season.

Leeds Rhinos' Kruise Leeming and Blake Austin celebrate at Hull. Picture: Richard Sellers/PA Wire.

Looking ahead to Magic Weekend, Castleford will be a tough game after their success in bursting Huddersfield’s bubble last Friday and comfortably beating them. We need to head into that game behaving ourselves and playing to the game plan Rohan Smith sets up.

If we throw the ball about like the ‘old Leeds’, Castleford will struggle to keep hold of us.


The boys are back in town ... It has been a long time coming but Leeds recorded a 62-16 thrashing of Hull FC which was their biggest away win since 2009.

Aidan Sezer and Zak Hardaker celebrate Leeds Rhinos' victory over Hull FC. Picture: Will Palmer/

Having not beaten any of the top six this season, a win was imperative with the team needing this result to keep alive any play-off hopes. Leeds scored early and dominated the first half, going into the sheds 22-10 up at half-time. I am not sure anyone anticipated Leeds annihilating Hull in the second period. However, with seven unanswered tries, the home team just could not contain the Rhinos with red-hot Ash Handley running in five tries.

Leeds notched up 11 tries, playing some enthralling rugby league and we should wear pink every week as we are now unbeaten in three in the dayglow kit.

The Loiners head to Magic Weekend in buoyant mood and, if we produce a similar performance, we will have every chance of beating Cas. Special thanks to Nadine Dorries who’s speech gaffe in confusing RL with union created huge social media traffic and a boost for the World Cup which wouldn’t have been possible without this embarrassing clanger.


For the second time under Rohan Smith, we’ve seen what happens when he can get the team to click.

Going to Hull FC and putting 62 points on them is a great result for any team, never mind an at-times struggling Leeds Rhinos outfit. It was evident that Richie Myler’s ball handling makes him invaluable wherever you play him.

And Kruise Leeming came out strong after a dip in standards against Saints the week before.

He has got to be up there with the best runners from dummy-half in the league.

I gave him a bit of a hammering last week but he deserves credit where it’s due.

No matter how bad Leeds have been the last few years, you can always rely on Ash Handley. He is always up there or thereabouts among the top try scorers and metres made.

Five tries for Handley in the No 5 jersey, which has had some decent players wear it in the past to say the least.

A win against Cas at Magic Weekend and then, with a few winnable games coming up on the horizon, we may just sneak into that sixth spot.


It was a good week to be a Rhinos fan.

With our women’s team beating Wigan and our men’s team beating Hull, it was great to watch.

A total of 110 points scored between two games where we thrashed our opposition, it was definitely a good change of fortune.

A couple of weeks ago, I said something about how Ash Handley has been a stand-out so far this season and he got his reward over the weekend with a handful of tries.

But it was also great to see Aidan Sezer and Blake Austin ‘click’ while working together on Saturday. Those occasions have been few and far between for the duo this season, but let’s hope they can continue that and push us on for some success now this season.

Given the fact we had three players missing through suspension as well, we put in a performance and a half. Long may it continue.

With the young Rhinos reserves smashing 52 points against Newcastle Thunder, it was a good weekend all round. Roll on Magic Weekend.


An all-round performance and victory was needed for the Rhinos at the weekend – and what they came up with wasn’t too bad at all!

It really does show that when the Rhinos have a full squad they will be able to compete with any team. We just haven’t had that all season. It will be interesting to see what Rohan Smith does with Harry Newman and Jack Walker when they return.

I was shocked to see Ash Handley miss out on an England spot a few weeks back with his form. But, if he carries on scoring for fun, he has to start for England at the World Cup.

It’s the best time of the year this weekend and it’s the Tigers versus the Rhinos.

We gave them a good game at their place with a very young team earlier this campaign and, if we play like we did at the weekend, I can’t see anything else but a win.

Credit to Cas, they got a great result on Friday against Huddersfield Giants so they are on form.

We’ll need to be at our best to win, though.

It feels like another massive game to keep the play-off hopes alive.


The victory at Hull was stunning and, clearly, all down to wearing the pink kit!

Hull FC were shocking and couldn’t blame that on Josh Reynolds, who they’d sacked a couple of weeks ago. Leeds actually coughed up two more clear chances and could have scored 70-plus points. Everyone ‘fired’ on the day and, apart from a wee wobble midway through the first half when Hull got back into it, there were fine performances all round.

I’m not a massive fan of Magic Weekend, put off by habitually playing Bradford five times a season back in the day.

I’m also bored with hanging around all day for the Leeds game which is always on last on whatever day (I think there’s only been one, out of all the Magics, where Leeds hasn’t been the last game of the day).

However, buoyed by the victory at Hull, Leeds could give Castleford a good run for their money on the day …

Finally, missing from last week’s piece owing to deadlines, let me pay tribute to the late Harry Gration. Rugby league doesn’t seem to have too many friends in the mainstream media and Harry was one.

He also spent time as the media manager at the RFL in the mid-90s in a brief departure from his TV work. As his catchphrase went “enjoy your Rugby league, we do”. He will be much missed.