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Leeds Rhinos

2017 Super League Champions

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Leeds Rhinos 36 Wakefield Trinity Wildcats 20

23rd June 2006

By Leeds Rhinos

Leeds Rhinos have gone top of engage Super League for the first time this season for a least 24 hours with a 36-20 win over Wakefield at Headingley Carnegie.

 The Rhinos went into this game knowing that a ten point win would take them top of engage Super League at least for 24 hours and, although they were without Jamie Peacock, they immediately set about trying to secure that margin of victory. The home side scored the first try of the game after six minutes. Leeds had moved down field after David March had given away a penalty for a tackle around the head on Ryan Bailey. The Rhinos moved the ball towards the South Stand side and a little shimmy from Kevin Sinfield wrong footed Monty Betham in the Wildcats defence to create the gap. The pass then released Gareth Ellis and the former Wakefield captain powered his way through some weak defence to score. Sinfield added the conversion to make it 6-0.

WP – Home MPU

The Wildcats then had a try disallowed by video ref Robert Connolly after Semi Tadulala had knocked the ball out of Chev Walker's hands when he had collected a towering bomb by Ben Jeffries. Leeds managed to double their lead after 17 minutes when Keith Senior swatted off four would be tacklers to power his way over in the corner. Sinfield added a touchline conversion to make it 12-0. However, the Rhinos were soon to get a rude awakening with two quick fire tries from the visitors. Firstly, Danny McGuire was penalised for offside close to his line and from the ensuing penalty the pressure eventually told and Ben Jeffries crossed for the Wildcats first try. Three minutes later when Ryan Atkins broke through the Rhinos defensive line and sprinted down field, just beating the desperate runs from Senior and Scott Donald. Rooney converted both tries to level the game at 12-12.

The Rhinos were then able to control some possession for the first time in five minutes and moved down field thanks to a penalty against Watene for a high shot on Burrows. A great cut out pass from Sinfield gave Ellis time to burst forward and hold off two would tacklers to touch down one handed. Sinfield added the conversion to make it 18-12 after 37 minutes. Leeds had a chance to extend that lead on the hooter but Lee Smith was just stopped short as he went for the line. The Rhinos got off to a flying start to the second half when Burrow shrugged off tacklers to burst fourty metres downfield and earn a penalty. Leeds managed to build pressure from that position, Senior offloaded to Sinfield who passed to McGuire. The stand off arced across the field before passing to Feather, running around and collecting the offload and going for line. He was caught but stretched out his arm to score one handed.

A minute later the Rhinos were in again, Ellis with the break this time. He offloaded to Sinfield who caught and passed in the same movement to Smith, who chimed into the line brilliantly to score. Sinfield converted both to give the Rhinos an 18 point lead. That lead was extended on the hour mark when McGuire looked set for his 23rd try of the season but instead, having cut back to avoid the cover, he passed to Lee Smith, again showing great support play, to score the try. Sinfield missed his first kick of the night but the Rhinos still led 34-12 and were on their way to the top of the table. Wakefield, to their credit, continued to press the Rhinos and a break and good offload by Tom Saxton set Jamie Field up for a try against his former club after 65 minutes. Rooney's conversion though struck the post and bounced wide leaving the score 34-16.

The Wildcats managed to get another score back four minutes later when quick hands across field created space for Semi Tadulala to score in the corner passed the dive of McGuire. Roone's missed the conversion to leave it at 34-20. Leeds were then left to breath a sigh of relief and in particular Lee Smith. Smith and Danny Williams made a hash of collecting a through kick from Jeffries. Rooney appeared to have knocked the ball through with his thigh but the video replay showed the faintest of touches with his wrist and Jeffries subsequent try was ruled out. With two minutes remaining, Sinfield took the unusual step of going for a goal from a penalty in front of the posts and further extended the Rhinos lead to 36-20.

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