The Rhinos returned to Headingley Carnegie knowing they would have their work cut out against a much improved Widnes outfit who were unbeaten in their opening three games in Super League.
The opening quarter was as tight as expected especially with a strong wind blowing around Headingley Carnegie. That meant the kicking game for both sides was a lottery and it made life particularly difficult for the full back line.
However, Leeds did eventually make the break through after 19 minutes when Ben Jones-Bishop announced himself for the 2014 season as he finished off spectacularly outwide following a flowing move along the backline.
He soon made it two tries for the season when Kevin Sinfield, Stevie Ward and Zak Hardaker combined to devastating effect to move the ball along the backline with pace and Jones-Bishop cut back inside to score. Sinfield added the conversion to make it 10-0 at the break.
Widnes had produced a strong showing in the first half but they were blown away by the Rhinos after the break. Leeds crossed for a third try inside the opening two minutes of the half. Kallum Watkins took the ball fifteen metres out and there looked to be little on until he produced some fast feet to wrong foot the Vikings defence and go through to score.
Headingley Carnegie then erupted after 52 minutes when good work by Paul Aiton got the Rhinos going forward before Brett Delaney burst through the defence. He offloaded to Ryan Bailey who raced in from thirty metres out and showed great pace to pull away from the defence to score.
Kevin Sinfield capitalised on a great break by Watkins and Jones-Bishop almost immediately from the kick off as the outside backs cut loose before the winger throw a well judged pass back inside for Sinfield to score.
Leeds made sure of ending Widnes' 100% record with two further tries just after the hour mark. Rob Burrow was on the end of some great work by Sinfield and McGuire, as so many times before, to finish off well from 25 metres out before Jamie Jones-Buchanan capped his first home game of the season with a try, racing through to touch down McGuire's grubber.
The Rhinos had further chances but credit to Widnes who continued to battle hard and they got a reward five minutes when time when Rhys Hanbury hacked on a pass before touching down to get his side off the mark but it was scant consolation.
|Leeds Rhinos Score Card|
|Widnes Vikings Score Card|