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Leeds Rhinos

2017 Super League Champions

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Leeds Rhinos 26 Bradford Bulls 24

7th July 2006

By Leeds Rhinos

The Rhinos have done a "Bradford" on the Bulls, snatching a 26-24 victory in the last second with a Scott Donald try converted from the touchline by Rob Burrow.

The Rhinos were looking to buck the trend between these two sides this season and claim a home win that would maintain the pressure on St Helens at the top of the table. Leeds made one change from the previous week with Danny McGuire returning in place of Willie Poching, who was ruled out with a knee injury. The Bulls also had one change from the side that lost last week at Salford with youngster Matt Cook out through illness and replaced by Sam Burgess. The Rhinos got off to the perfect start in front of full house with a try inside three minutes. Bradford had blocked a McGuire kick to restart the tackle count in their own half. The home side did not need a second invitation and Peacock set up McGuire with a great offload and he released Scott Donald down the wing for his 14th try of the season. Sinfield could not add the conversion so the Rhinos led 4-0.

WP – Home MPU

Bradford got off the mark ten minutes later through Karl Pryce. The Bulls gained possession after Chev Walker was adjudged to have knocked on 20 metres out. Two tackles later Andy Lynch bumped off a tackle and fed Iestyn Harris. He fed the ball along the line and Pryce crossed in the corner. Deacon added the conversion from the touchline to make it 6-4. Bradford increased their lead four minutes later this time down the other wing. Despite appeals for a forward pass, Shontayne Hape took the ball to the line before offloading to former Rhino Marcus St Hilaire, who cut in off his wing and dived to score. Deacon again converted to make it 12-4 to the visitors.

The Rhinos dominated possession after that but could not get across the Bulls line. Ali Lauitiiti and Mark O'Neill both went close but to no avail. Leeds then had to withstand three sets of six on their own line as both Chev Walker and Danny Williams knock on attempting intercepts. The pressure eventually told when Danny McGuire could not keep hold of Karl Pryce in the tackle and the Bulls winger regathered his feet and had a simple stroll in for the try. Deacon added the conversion to make it 18-4 to Steve McNamara's side after 33 minutes. The Rhinos needed a lift before half time and they got it on the hooter as Rob Burrow raced through a gap on half way and showed blistering pace to go round the outside of Withers to score in the corner. His own conversion attempt struck the post and bounced out leaving the score 18-8 to the Bulls at half time.

Once again the Rhinos got off to a great start in the second half with a try inside three minutes. Leeds had gained a repeat set inside the Bulls 20 metre area, good work by Smith and McGuire created the gap and Nick Scruton powered his way through for his second try of the season. Burrow added the conversion to make the score 18-14 to the Bulls. Two minutes later the visitors opted to kick a penalty close to the Rhinos line and Deacon duly added the two points to their total. However, it was a brief respite for the visitors as the Rhinos were producing a top class performance on defence and asking questions every time in attack. The Rhinos had a try disallowed by referee Phil Bentham after 53 minutes. A great flowing move saw Lauitiiti, Senior and Ablett combine to send Williams in at the corner but it was not to be.

The missed opportunities were to prove costly when, after 57 minutes, Karl Pryce broke clear down the South Stand side to go over for his hat trick try from 30 metres out completely against the run of play. Deacon missed his first kick of the night but the Bulls had re-established their ten point lead. It was becoming a frustrating night for the Rhinos with high shots and delaying tactics from the Bulls. Eventually the referee began awarding penalties and Henderson was the culprit ten metres from his own line. Leeds moved the ball wide and McGuire pushed off one tackler and danced his way to the line. Burrow added the conversion to bring Leeds to within four points after 68 minutes. Two minutes later the Rhinos were denied their second try of the night by referee Bentham. Leeds charged a kick down and Rob Burrow picked up the loose ball, darted round the defence and scored under the posts only to turn round and see Bentham 40 metres back down field signalling a penalty for offside. However, the drama had just begun. In the final second of the game the Rhinos moved up field, McGuire, Lauitiiti and O'Neill ducked and weaved in midfield looking for an opening. With time running out, Leeds burst into life and O'Neill sprinted for the corner, he offloaded to Senior, who found Williams, the young winger put an overhead pass into Scott Donald, and the Aussie sprinted in at the corner. Rob Burrow then kicked the touchline conversion to win the game and lift the roof of Headingley Carnegie.

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