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Leeds Rhinos

2017 Super League Champions

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Leigh Centurions 12 Leeds Rhinos 36

2nd April 2006

By Leeds Rhinos

The Rhinos have progressed through to the fifth round of the Powergen Challenge Cup with a 36-12 win over Leigh in atrocious conditions.

The Rhinos returned to the Coliseum having won by over 60 points in their two visits here last season however there seemed little chance of a repeat of those scorelines with the game played in horrendous conditions. The Rhinos defended the "deep end" in the first half and although they enjoyed the lion share of possession it was energy sapping sapping work to get away from their own line. However, an error on the first tackle after 12 minutes by Leigh full back Simon Grix gave the Rhinos good field position and they had their best opportunity when McGuire fed Mathers who released Senior who was caught just short of the line. However the Rhinos forced two goal line drop outs as the pressure mounted.

WP – Home MPU

The Rhinos finally crossed after 18 minutes after Rob Burrow had earned a penalty on half way. From there Leeds moved down field and Matt Diskin released Kevin Sinfield, who stepped round the cover to score under the posts. Sinfield added the conversion to make it 6-0. The Rhinos crossed for their second try of the game after 26 minutes. Richard Mathers did well to push the ball backwards after slipping in the mud. From there Sinfield released Gareth Ellis who burst up field before passing to Burrow, who was pulled down as he took the pass. However, Leeds kept possession and brilliantly floated miss pass by Mathers gave Smith a simple run in in the corner. Sinfield missed the conversion to make it 10-0. The Rhinos then came under their first real bit of pressure as Sinfield knocked on a grubber ten metres from his line in the mud. Leigh pushed hard at the line and it took a relieving kick dead by Mathers to save the day. And the visitors made the most of their let off two minutes later.

Rowley was penalised on half way and Leeds poured forward, Lauitiiti putting the final pass into Keith Senior, who held off two would be tacklers to score in the corner. Sinfield added an excellent touchline conversion in the conditions to make it 16-0 after 36 minutes. The Rhinos wrapped up the first half with a try in the final second from Gareth Ellis. The try came from a great break set up by Lauitiiti with a great pass out of the tackle to Senior, he raced up field before being tackled on the ten metre line. However, the Rhinos moved the ball wide and a great grubber kick by Burrow was pounced on by Gareth Ellis for the try. Sinfield added the conversion to make it 22-0 at half time. The Rhinos started the second half as they had finished the first. Within two minutes they had increased their lead. Danny McGuire created the try with a 25 metre break before being hauled down five metres out. But two tackles later Smith was in at the corner. Sinfield missed the conversion but Leeds now led 26-0.

Seven minutes later the Rhinos were in again off a break by Ellis. He burst upfield before offloading to McGuire. He then checked his run before kicking through. Scott Donald raced onto the kick but it held up in the mud and he over ran it as he slid in the sludge however Ashley Gibson was on hand to pick up and touch down. Rob Burrow added an excellent touchline conversion to make it 32-0. Leigh then enjoyed a spell of pressure on the Leeds line and were only denied a score by a brilliant cover tackle by Keith Senior. However, the Centurions continued to build pressure and scrum half Aaron Heremaia was on hand to touch down a kick through by Julian O'Neill to make it 32-6 after 62 minutes. The Rhinos hit back after 71 minutes with a brilliant team try. It took incredible handling skills in the conditions to create the try with at least eight offloads in the build up to the try before Richard Mathers raced in on the outside. Sinfield could not add the conversion but it remained 36-6. Leeds were looking like they were going to extend their score in the final seconds, when Scott Donald produced a brilliant one handed pick up but as the Rhinos spread the ball across the field, Smith was unable to take a low final pass. Instead the ball was spilled and Leigh winger Misili Manu raced 90 metres upfield. The conversion from Julian O'Neill ended the game and made the final score 36-12.

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