On this Day – 30th June

On this day in 1996 the Rhinos travelled to Knowsley Road for the first time in Super League. St Helens were leading the Super League, whilst Leeds had won just 4 of their 13 games. However Saints were coming into the game on the back of defeat to Wigan and Leeds had won their previous encounter against Castleford. Despite taking the lead shortly in the second half, and tries from Nick Fozzard, Barrie McDermott and Gary Mercer as well as a goal each from Graham Holroyd and Sateki Tuipilotu, Leeds lost 16-42. The game also saw the debut of Leroy Rivett, who was called up from the Academy due to an injury crisis in the Rhinos team.

In 2012, Leeds beat London Broncos at The Stoop. Looking to make it three league wins in a row; the Rhinos produced a masterclass against a Broncos side that lost 20 games that season. It was London that took an early lead but Shaun Lunt, who had signed from Huddersfield on loan, got the Rhinos back level with a dummy half scoot. Lunt went over for his second to extend Leeds’ lead after 31 minutes before a quick double for Danny McGuire put the game out of sight at half time.

An early Kieron Dixon score was cancelled out by McGuire, who completed his hat trick at the start of the second half. Carl Ablett also got on the scoresheet thanks to a Ryan Bailey offload. Jamie Jones-Buchanan was released by Kevin Sinfield to set up McGuire’s fourth, taking the Leeds lead out to 40-12, before tries from Zak Hardaker, Rob Burrow and Kylie Leuluai completed a 58-12 victory.

Leeds also completed a ten try blitzing over Widnes Vikings in 2013. Despite a long injury list Leeds still managed a convincing victory to keep them in the top four. Joel Moon scored in the opening ten minutes; a dummy to winger Ryan Hall fooled the Widnes, allowing the centre to glide over and score.

A break by Zak Hardaker set up Liam Sutcliffe to run in for his first try of the game also. Both scorers would double their tallies before Burrow took a pass from Sutcliffe to touch down. Paul McShane set up Ryan Hall with a kick into the corner before Zak Hardaker, who was kicker for the night, received a pass from Sutcliffe to score the seventh try of the half. A late London rally saw the score reduced to 6-38 at half time; Kevin Brown the only scorer.

Ben Jones-Bishop resumed normal service for Leeds and Burrow extended the lead further, using Carl Ablett’s break to run under the posts. With the score at 6-48, Widnes produced a response with Kevin Brown completing his hat trick, Gareth Hock getting a double and Rhys Hanbury also adding his name to the scoresheet. Kallum Watkins took the Rhinos beyond 50 points before three more Widnes tries ended the game at 52-36.

In 2019, Leeds took on Catalans Dragons and gained a morale boosting win in their efforts to move away from the foot of the Betfred Super League table.

Three tries in the opening 20 minutes from Adam Cuthbertson, Tom Briscoe and Brad Singleton put Leeds 18-0 up before Arthur Romano hit back for the Dragons before the break.

Sam Tomkins converted his own second-half try to get Dragons back to within six points with 25 minutes remaining.

Tries from Konrad Hurrell and Jack Walker, however, ensured Leeds’ win.

On this day in 1979 Great Britain played their second game of the Australian Test in Sydney. Having lost the previous encounter 35-0 in Brisbane just two weeks earlier, the Great Britain team were once again defeated, this time 16-24. Amongst the Great Britain squad that day were Leeds men David Holmes and David Ward. John Holmes had made his Great Britain debut back in 1971 against New Zealand and went on to make 14 starts as well 6 substitute appearances for the side. David Ward had made his debut 2 years earlier against New Zealand in the World Cup and made a further 11 appearances for the Great Britain squad.