Young trio promoted by Rhinos in 2015 squad numbers

Leeds Rhinos have promoted youngsters Jimmy Keinhorst, Liam Sutcliffe and Brad Singleton into their top twenty squad numbers for the 2015 season.

Keinhorst, who broke through into the Rhinos team in 2012 and spent time last season at Wakefield on loan, will wear 20, whilst 19-year-old Sutcliffe, who made 26 appearances last season is rewarded with the number 18 shirt vacated by Chris Clarkson, who has joined Widnes on loan for 2015. Finally, prop Brad Singleton has been promoted to the number 19 shirt having made 42 first team appearances.

England winger Tom Briscoe moves up to the number two shirt, previously worn by Ben Jones-Bishop, whilst Mitch Achurch moves up three places to fill the number 16 shirt that was previously worn by Ryan Bailey.

New signing Adam Cuthbertson will wear 17 in his first season at the club have joined from Newcastle Knights on a four year deal.

Outside of the top twenty, former Yorkshire Carnegie Rugby Union player Josh Walters is rewarded for his emergence last season in Super League with the number 21 shirt, whilst Andy Yates will be looking to put a nightmare first season at the club behind him at number 22.

Teenagers Elliot Minchella and Robbie Ward complete the squad for now whilst the number 25 will be left vacant at this stage.

Head Coach Brian McDermott commented, “Liam, Brad and Jimmy all deserve their elevation to the top twenty. Brad and Liam in particular established themselves in the first team last season and I am sure Jimmy would have had a long run in Super League if it was not for injuries. The first ten days of pre-season have gone well and the announcement of the squad numbers is another landmark as we prepare for the new season.”

Commenting on squad, Chief Executive Gary Hetherington said, “As a club we have a policy of retaining and rewarding our best young talent and that has certainly been our approach when allocating the squad numbers for 2015. Unlike a number of our opponents, we have not had to replace key players from our starting line up with only Adam Cuthbertson joining us to replace Ben Jones-Bishop of the senior players. As we have done previously, we have kept the number 25 vacant at present. This might be for a new signing or a chance to promote someone who has impressed in pre-season training.

“We also have a number of players outside of the 24 players named today who will spend next season initially on loan but who are all contracted for 2016 and will be vying to join the squad for 2016. In 2014, we went into the season with a squad of 22 so we have increased that already and will look to add another player to that group before the season,” added Hetherington.  

The 2015 squad in full is:
1              Zak Hardaker
2              Tom Briscoe
3              Kallum Watkins
4              Joel Moon
5              Ryan Hall
6              Danny McGuire
7              Rob Burrow
8              Kylie Leuluai
9              Paul Aiton
10           Jamie Peacock
11           Jamie Jones-Buchanan
12           Carl Ablett
13           Kevin Sinfield
14           Stevie Ward
15           Brett Delaney
16           Mitch Achurch
17           Adam Cuthbertson
18           Liam Sutcliffe
19           Brad Singleton
20           Jimmy Keinhorst
21           Josh Walters
22           Andy Yates
23           Elliot Minchella
24           Robbie Ward