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Leeds Rhinos

2017 Super League Champions

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Leeds Rhinos v St Helens, Saturday 7th August, kick off 2.30pm

4th August 2010

By Leeds Rhinos

Leeds Rhinos and St Helens go head to head this Saturday with a place at Wembley Stadium at stake on a record breaking occasion for both clubs.

The Headingley Carnegie ticket office still has limited numbers of tickets available for Saturday's massive game. The tickets that are left are priced £18 and are situated in the Direct Golf UK Stand near the tryline towards the Pink Link Stand end of the ground, which is the end that St Helens have sold however this block is mainly Leeds Rhinos fans.

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We have no more tickets left for the Fantastic Media Stand behind the posts. All tickets will be returned to the RFL at 5pm on Thursday night so call the ticket office now on 0871 423 1315 to make sure you are there come Saturday afternoon.

St Helens are appearing in a record-extending 10th successive RL Challenge Cup semi-final. They have won six of the semi-finals and gone on to win the Cup five times in the period. The only current Saints player to have played in the previous nine semi-finals is Paul Wellens.

St Helens have appeared in 21 Challenge Cup Finals, having won the trophy 12 times. Only Wigan have a better record with 17 wins in 28 finals. Saints have won nine of 15 finals at Wembley.

Leeds Rhinos will be making a record-equalling 42nd RL Challenge Cup semi-final appearance, having won 20 and lost a record 21. Their last semi-final appearance was in 2008 when they lost 26-16 to St Helens at Huddersfield.

Wigan Warriors hold the record of 42 semi-final appearances.

Leeds have appeared in 20 RL Challenge Cup Finals and lifted the trophy 11 times. They have won six of 11 finals at Wembley.

Danny McGuire needs one try for a career total of 200 touchdowns. The half back has scored 181 tries for Leeds and 18 in representative matches, including five Test touchdowns for Great Britain.

Brent Webb will be making the 100th appearance of his Leeds Rhinos career.

Only Jamie Peacock (Bradford 2000 & 2003) and Keith Senior (Sheffield 1998) of the current Rhinos squad have previously won the Carnegie Challenge Cup but at their former clubs.

Saturday's game will evoke memories of the famous 2003 semi final at the same venue. The Rhinos trailed by six points going into the final seconds when Danny McGuire scored in the corner to give Kevin Sinfield a touchline conversion to send the game into extra time. He was on target and the Rhinos went on to win the game 33-26. There could be five players involved for Leeds on Saturday who played in that game. Keith Senior, Kevin Sinfield, Danny McGuire, Ryan Bailey and Matt Diskin were all on the winning side. Only Paul Wellens of the current Saints squad was involved that day. Players such as Rob Burrow and Jamie Jones-Buchanan for Leeds and Keiron Cunningham, Ade Gardner, Jon Wilkin and James Graham did feature that season for their respective clubs but did not feature in this game.

Don't forget you can follow the action at our special matchday live section at www.therhinos.co.uk/live from kick off on Saturday or if you are out and about there will be match updates on our Twitter page at www.twitter.com/leedsrhinos throughout the afternoon.

St Helens’s run of nine successive semi-finals is as follows:
2001 Beat Leeds 27-22 at Wigan
2002 Beat Leeds 42-16 at Wigan
2003 Lost to Leeds 26-33 at Huddersfield (after extra time)
2004 Beat Huddersfield 46-6 at Warrington
2005 Lost to Hull 8-34 at Huddersfield
2006 Beat Hull KR 50-0 at Huddersfield
2007 Beat Bradford 35-14 at Huddersfield
2008 Beat Leeds 26-16 at Huddersfield
2009 Lost to Huddersfield 14-24 at Warrington

Leeds Rhinos
Last RL Challenge Cup Final
v Hull FC Lost 24-25 At Cardiff … 2005
(Last won Cup: Beat London Broncos 52-16 at Wembley … 1999) Also last Wembley appearance

St Helens
Last RL Challenge Cup Final
v Hull FC Won 28-16 at Wembley … 2008

Previous RL Challenge Cup meetings
1910-11 (2) St. Helens 6 Leeds 11
1929-30 (2) Leeds 5 St. Helens 18
1970-71 (2) Leeds 4 St. Helens 0
1971-72 (F) St. Helens 16 Leeds 13 At Wembley
1976-77 (SF) Leeds 7 St. Helens 2 At Wigan
1977-78 (F) Leeds 14 St. Helens 12 At Wembley
1982-83 (2) Leeds 13 St. Helens 23
1991-92 (2) Leeds 12 St. Helens 32
1993-94 (SF) Leeds 20 St. Helens 8 At Wigan
1999 (5) Leeds 24 St. Helens 16
2000 (5) Leeds 26 St. Helens 20
2001 (SF) St. Helens 27 Leeds 22 At Wigan
2002 (SF) St. Helens 42 Leeds 16 At Wigan
2003 (SF) Leeds 33* St. Helens 26* At Huddersfield
2004 (5) St. Helens 24 Leeds 14
2008 (SF) St. Helens 26 Leeds 16 At Huddersfield
2009 (4) Leeds 18 St Helens 22
* After extra time

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Leeds Rhinos 32 St Helens 28

7th August 2010

By Leeds Rhinos

Two tries from Danny McGuire in the second half have sent Leeds Rhinos to Wembley for the Carnegie Challenge Cup Final.

Carnegie Challenge Cup semi finals are generally dramatic affairs but the drama starting before kick off at the Galpharm as Greg Eastwood was named in the Rhinos squad and Leon Pryce was ruled out for St Helens.

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These two teams have dominated the domestic competitions for nearly a decade and they came head to head once again with a place at Wembley at stake.

For Saints, the semi final has become a regular part of their fixture list having appeared in the last four for the previous nine years. For Leeds though the chance to appear at the new Wembley Stadium was a major carrot, eleven years on from the club's last triumph in the oldest competition in world Rugby League.

Eastwood was a surprise inclusion having proved his fitness throughout the week after being put through his paces by the club's medical team. Ian Kirke, Luke Ambler and Scott Donald were the unlucky ones to miss out from the initial 19 man squad named.  

For Saints the shock news, that started as a whisper at the Galpharm and then grew into fact as the Saints team arrived was that their talismanic half back had been ruled out by a neck injury. The former Bradford star had appeared at a pre-match press conference five days earlier but appeared to be in fine shape and looking ahead to the game.

The early exchanges were as tough as you would expect from these two sides. Leeds looked to have the early advantage but then Danny McGuire lost control of the ball under pressure from Chris Flannery. Francis Meli picked up the loose ball and went 30 metres to put the ball down between the posts. Replays clearly showed that Flannery knocked on and video referee Ian Smith took little time to rule it out.

Leeds responded to that let off with their first attack on the Saints line and it nearly resulted in a try. A cross field kick by Burrow was snatched out of the air by Ryan Hall but he could not get back down to earth quickly enough to put the ball down before he went dead in goal.

The Rhinos did get off the mark on their next visit to the Saints redzone. A late hit by Scott Moore on Kevin Sinfield initially went unpunished but referee Phil Bentham then brought play back. Having dusted himself off, Sinfield stepped up to kick his side into a 2-0 after seven minutes.

However, Leeds were soon under pressure when Jamie Peacock knocked on from the re-start and it took an incredible defensive set of six to keep Saints out and maintain the slender lead.

The Champions had to produce some incredible goal line defence to keep Saints out. They were putting pressure on themselves by losing possession on a number of occasions inside their own half but they more than made up for it collectively with brilliant team work to deny Saints at every turn.

Leeds crossed for the games first try after 21 minutes when great interplay between Senior and Webb created a gap for Ryan Hall down the touchline and the winger went over for his sixth try of this year's Carnegie Challenge Cup campaign. Sinfield added the touchline conversion to make it 8-0.

Mick Potter responded to that set back by bringing on the talismanic Keiron Cunningham off the bench and it had the desired effect as Saints drove at the heart of the Leeds defence. They got a try five minutes when Wellens scored next to the post after going from dummy half. Foster added the straight forward conversion to make it 8-6.

Cunningham was proving a real influence on his side and he took Saints into the lead as half time approach. He powered his way to the line from dummy half and then forced his arm out before crashing downwards to score. Foster added the touchline conversion to make it 12-8 after 34 minutes.

Worse was to come for the Rhinos with the last play of the first half. Leeds were looking to open Saints up from deep inside their half but Eastwood attempted to pat the ball back inside to the cover only to see Francis Meli snatch it up and go 25 metres to score. Foster converted to make it 18-8 at the break.

The Rhinso needed a response from the re-start and they got an opportunity almost straight away. Coming out from their own line, Saints knocked on 20 metres out and from the next set, Webb and Senior combined again to put Hall away in the corner. The decision went upstairs for Ian Smith to judge but he awarded the try. Sinfield added the conversion to make it 18-14 after 43 minutes.

It was a busy afternoon for the Oldham official and he was soon called upon again when Matt Gidley went over in the corner for Saints. Despite Hall's efforts the replays showed he got the ball down and Saints had stretched their lead again. Foster was off target with the conversion attempt but Saints had an eight point lead.

Potter's men looked the likely winners at that stage but two pieces of magic from two other veterans, Senior and Danny Buderus, turned the game on its head.

Senior, who was a member of Sheffield Eagles' Cup-winning team of 1998, produced a barnstorming charge up the middle and the supporting McGuire juggled with the pass before securing the ball and sprinting 40 metres for his landmark try.

Five minutes later, Buderus came up with a similar surge through the heart of the Saints defence and Webb was at his shoulder to finish off with the try that put the Rhinos back in front.

That was the signal for a frantic last 15 minutes which kept the crowd on the edge of their seats.

St Helens prop James Graham charged onto Cunningham's pass five metres short of the line and forced the ball down for a try that restored his side's lead but McGuire struck for the winner when supporting a superb break by Jamie Peacock to send the Rhinos fans wild with delight.

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