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Leeds Rhinos

2017 Super League Champions

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Leeds Rhinos 6 Hull FC 17

7th September 2007

By Leeds Rhinos

A 17-6 defeat to Hull FC at Headingley Carnegie finally ended the Rhinos hopes of finishing top of the table this season.

Leeds produced an error packed performance throughout and that defeat combined with St Helens win over Warrington at Knowsley Road meant the League Leaders Shield will remain in St Helens.

WP – Home MPU

Hull came out fired up but they were lucky to still have 13 men on the pitch after less than two minutes. Former Rhino Garreth Carvell came in late with an elbow to the jaw of Matt Diskin after the Leeds hooker had offloaded however referee Richard Silverwood deemed the incident only severe enough to go on report.

The opening quarter was an error-strewn affair from both sides. Leeds for their part had numerous great attacking chances close to the Hull line but unnecessary offloads in congested areas cost them possession and the ability to build pressure on the visitors line.

However, eventually the try came but it took until the 29th minute. Rob Burrow kicked through with his instep towards the post and Wayne Godwin made a desperate dive, goalkeeper style, to stop the ball going through. However, all the former Wigan man managed to do was deflected the ball away from his full back Shaun Briscoe and Carl Ablett was the quickest to react to score his first try in Super League this season. Kevin Sinfield added the conversion to make it 6-0.

Bizarrely after such a shoddy opening half hour, Hull hit back straight away from the re-start as Godwin made an immediate amends. Jamie Thackray appeared to have the ball ripped from his possession by at least two Hull defenders but play was waved on and Godwin spotted his opportunity, going from dummy half and ducking under the attempted tackle by Brent Webb. Tickle added the conversion to level the score.

If Leeds fans were left scratching their head after that try, worse was to come five minutes later. Mathew Head produced a great chip ahead for former Rhino Gareth Raynor to chase. He collected the ball and dived for the line as Webb came flying across to drag him into touch. Video ref Ian Smith was called upon to judge the validity and the replay seemed to suggest that Raynor grounded the ball short and was then pulled into touch by Webb. However, puzzlement met the big screen when it flashed up TRY to the visitors. Tickle's conversion was wide but Hull now led 10-6.

Despite pressure at the end of the half, Leeds were unable to cut that deficit.  The Rhinos were left to rue their luck again at the start of the second half. Keith Senior appeared to have finished off a spectacular team try however when video ref Ian Smith looked at the footage he returned to an earlier offload by Gareth Ellis. The second rower had offloaded to Danny McGuire but as his ball carrying arm came through to throw the pass it hit the ground and Smith adjudged that the tackle had been completed and penalised Ellis.

Leeds had to withstand three repeat sets on their own line after that which they did with real determination. But just when they looked like they were getting back into the game, Richard Whiting intercepted a Rob Burrow pass and raced down field. Donald did brilliantly to stop him and Richard Horne then seemed to knock on trying to take the offload. Insult was added to injury when Leeds were penalised in front of their posts for not being square at marker. Tickle kicked the penalty to make it 12-6 to the visitors after 56 minutes.

Eight minutes later Head increased Hull's lead with a drop goal after another spell of pressure on the Leeds line.
Leeds sparked into life after that drop goal and camped themselves on the Hull line but the Airlie Bird's repelled everything that Leeds threw at them.

Growing in confidence from that defensive stint, Hull moved back up field as they looked to seal victory. They forced two goal line drop outs on the Rhinos and then in the last minute Gareth Raynor crossed having bombed an earlier chance. Tickle's conversion went wide but Hull had secured a 17-6 victory to deny the Rhinos the chance of claiming top spot in the engage Super League.

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