MCCLENNAN NAMES CHAMPION SIDE
Leeds Rhinos Head Coach Brian McClennan has named his strongest side possible for Saturday’s final pre-season game against South Sydney Rabbitohs in Jacksonville.
Leeds Rhinos Head Coach Brian McClennan has named his strongest side possible for Saturday’s final pre-season game against South Sydney Rabbitohs in Jacksonville, Florida. McClennan has named the same starting line up as that which beat St Helens in the 2007 engage Super League Grand Final with only Ryan Bailey missing from the Old Trafford winning squad as he recovers back in the UK from a groin injury. The match is the culmination of a ten day training camp in Jacksonville ahead of the start of the Rhinos defence of their title against Hull KR at Headingley Carnegie on Saturday 2nd February in an all ticket game. Commenting on the preparations McClennan said, "The reception we have had in Jacksonville has been great and there has been lots of interest in Saturday’s match and Rugby League as a whole. The training camp has been excellent and the players have been outstanding, we can hopefully finish a good experience with a good performance on Saturday against a tough South Sydney side. "It is important that we don’t lose our focus on the Hull KR game next Saturday and with that in mind we have named a larger bench than normal, which will be important especially in the hot conditions with a 1pm kick off," added McClennan. Meanwhile, at a press conference on Wednesday in Jacksonville, it was revealed that Australian golfing legend Greg Norman will be amongst the spectators at Saturday’s game alongside Souths co-owner Russell Crowe. UK fans can listen to commentary from the game from a local Jacksonville radio station, www.1010XL.com, online on Saturday. Amongst the commentators will be former NFL linebacker Tom McManus, who played for five seasons with the Jacksonville Jaguars. The giant former gridiron defender has been spending time with both squads during the week and had Rhinos skipper Kevin Sinfield on his lunchtime radio show on Wednesday to promote the game. The team in full is: 1. Brent Webb 2. Scott Donald 3. Clinton Toopi 4. Keith Senior 5. Lee Smith 6. Danny McGuire 7. Rob Burrow 8. Kylie Leuluai 9. Matt Diskin 10. Jamie Peacock 11. Jamie Jones-Buchanan 12. Gareth Ellis 13. Kevin Sinfield (C) Substitutes 14. Ali Lauitiiti 17. Nick Scruton 18. Ian Kirke 19. Carl Ablett 20. Ashley Gibson 21. Jordan Tansey 22. Ryan Hall 23. Danny Williams 24. Luke Burgess 26. Ben Kaye 30. Michael Haley