Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Fri 17th Mar 2017 9:57 PM
A win for the Leeds Rhinos over Wakefield Trinity at Carnegie Headingley would see them pull level on points with top of the table Castleford Tigers, Wigan Warriors and Hull FC. A win of any description would lift the visitors above the Rhinos.

Leeds were without late withdrawal Liam Sutcliffe and the suspended Brad Singleton, and with Joel Moon named in the half-backs Rob Burrow would start the game on the bench.

Wakefield Wildcats were looking for a third successive win after claiming the scalps of Saints and Salford in the last two rounds, but themselves made five changes from last weeks line-up.

Both teams initially struggled with the conditions, failing to judge the strengths of kicks and finding the dead ball line or struggling with the catching.

After Brett Ferres had twice been held up over the line, the Rhinos finally broke the deadlock on sixteen when Kallum Watkins fielded a Danny McGuire chip kick to go under the sticks. Ashton Golding kicked the conversion from in front of the sticks.

On twenty Trinity used a 'free play' brilliantly keeping the ball alive before Tom Johnstone picked the ball up on the half way line and stepped past McGuire to go down the wing and avoid the chasing Golding to dive over in the corner. Sam Williams failed to convert from the touchline in the swirling wind.

When Briscoe was lifted in the tackle the Rhinos used the gifted field position for Matt Parcell put Anthony Mullally through a gap to crash over. Golding added the extras for an eight point lead at 12-4.

Two minutes later and with Wakefield holding on for too long in the tackle under their own sticks, McGuire pointed at the posts and Golding kicked the penalty.

Thirty seconds before the interval and a gorgeous reverse pass from Parcell, as he drew the Trinity defence, went into the hands of Watkins to score his second of the night. Golding added the extras for a 20-4 lead.

There was little to choose between the sides for the opening twenty minutes but as the half wore on it was the Rhinos who used the advantage of the conditions to establish the lead.

The second half had only been underway for three minutes when a long ball from Parcell found Ryan Hall to go twenty metres down the left wing and ground one-handed by the corner flag. Golding drilled the ball between the uprights.

Leeds had been forced to drop out under their own sticks and Wakefield used three tackles before David Fifita took a pass to spin out of two attempted tackles to ground on the line. Sam Williams kicked the extra two to reduce the arrears.

The Rhinos regained control on fifty-six when Adam Cuthbertson took a bullet pass from Rob Burrow to crash over from five metres to ground under the sticks. Golding added the simple conversion for 32-10.

Danny Kirmond added to Wakefield's woes when he was sin-binned on fifty-nine for a late challenge on Rob Burrow.

Two quick penalties to Leeds in the Trinity twenty resulted in a try when Matt Parcell went from acting half-back to dart over and score the Rhinos sixth try of the night. Golding maintained his 100% record with his seventh goal.

After the final hooter had sounded, with the Rhinos heads seemingly already in the dressing room, a Jacob Miller cross field kick was collected by a flying Tom Johnstone for his second. The kick was missed for final score of 38-14 to the home side.

It looks as though the massive loss at Castleford Tigers was a wake-up call for the Rhinos, and since Chief Executive Gary Hetherington sounded the early warning siren they seem to have more than turned the corner and shown a vast improvement. This was a disappointing night for Trinity, halting their brief winning run, and the nature of tonight's defeat will concern and frustrate coach Chris Chester.

Rhinos: Golding (7G), Briscoe, Watkins (2T), Keinhorst, Hall (T), McGuire, Moon, Cuthbertson (T), Parcell (T), Baldwinson, Ferres, Ablett, Delaney. Subs: Mullally (T), Walters, Burrow, Garbutt.

Trinity: Grix, Johnstone (2T), Tupou, Arundel, Jones-Bishop, Miller, Williams (G), Allgood, Wood, Huby, Hadley, Ashurst, Arona. Subs: Kirmond (SB), Sio, Fifita (T), Walker.

Referee: Jack Smith.

Half-Time: 20-4.

Full-Time: 38-14.

Attendance: 14,483.
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