Ones to Watch this week
Leeds' Kruise Leeming is tackled by Castleford's Daniel Smith and Liam Watts.
Ahead of the Rhinos’ clash with Leigh Centurions tomorrow night and the Rhinos Women’s match with Warrington Wolves on Sunday, we have highlighted five players that you should be watching out for across both teams. The Rhinos have welcomed back five players for their clash with the Centurions at Emerald Headingley, including the likes of Liam Sutcliffe and Rob Lui, while the Women’s team are looking to continue their unbeaten run in the Betfred Women’s Super League as Lois Forsell’s side currently sit top of the league.
Here are this week’s five players to watch out for:
1. Liam Sutcliffe
This week sees Liam Sutcliffe return for Richard Agar’s side, having missed Sunday’s win over Salford due to the RFL’s Return to Play policy.
Sutcliffe comes into Thursday’s fixture off the back of a great game against Castleford last time out, as well as top performances against Wakefield, Huddersfield and Hull FC too. So far he has one try, two try assists and one drop goal in the Betfred Super League but especially against the Tigers, he worked well with Gale to help the Rhinos score 60 points on the night. As a utility player, who over the course of his career has played at centre and full back too. his return is well timed with Luke Gale, Konrad Hurrell and Richie Myler all unavailable this week.
2. Fran Goldthorp
Fresh off the back of her England debut against Wales, Fran Goldthorp has been in fine form for the Rhinos Women so far in the 2021 Betfred Women’s Super League and this week against Warrington, she is likely to have her name on the scoresheet again. With the exception of round one, the winger has tries in every game so far in 2021 (13 overall) and even added her name to the list of try scorers against Wales last Friday alongside her team mate Caitlin Beevers.
Coming up against Warrington, the winger knows what it takes to score against the Wolves. When Leeds met Warrington for the first time in a Women’s competition in 2019, Goldthorp scored three tries in the 74-0 win and quickly became a recognised try scorer in the League, going on to add tries in that season’s Challenge Cup Final and Grand Final. Currently, she leads the Rhinos in tries scored in the Betfred Women’s Super League this season too.
3. Courtney Winfield-Hill
It is set to be another big week for Rhinos Women’s captain Courtney Winfield-Hill as the half back can break two more career milestones, after reaching 400 points for the Rhinos in last week’s win over Bradford Bulls. Winfield-Hill is on track to hit two more milestone statistics this week against Warrington. Should she convert three goals, she will reach 100 goals in the Betfred Women’s Super League and if she converts four goals, she will take her tally for the Rhinos up to 150.
After the team spent last season on the sidelines, as captain, Winfield-Hill has led from the front to get Leeds off to an unbeaten start of the league season. Only missing one match, she has amounted 72 points in five games (three tries and 30 goals) and the last time the Rhinos faced Warrington in 2019, she scored 30 points.
4. Kruise Leeming
Hooker Kruise Leeming is in his best form for the Rhinos at the moment and tomorrow’s clash with Leigh could see the England Knight put in another strong performance. Coming off the back of an impressive game for Tim Sheen’s All Stars, he followed it up by playing every minute in the win over Salford. Playing out of position for the second time this season, Leeming was outstanding again as he scored his third try of the season, taking a nice offload from Matt Prior to make a short break and touch down, and also assisted Richie Myler for his first try of the game.
Leeming currently ranks in the top ten players in the league in dummy half runs with 25 so far in 2021 but he also has eight tackle busts in his last three games, meaning he will be a threat to Leigh’s markers.
5. Zoe Hornby
One of the new additions for 2021, forward Zoe Hornby seems to have settled into the Rhinos’ system well. The loose forward is one of eight players to have featured in every match so far this season and has three tries in her last three league appearances. As one of three players to join the club from Whitley Bay Barbarians this season alongside hooker Orla McCallion and Sam Hulme, the loose forward has spent no time in getting herself on the teamsheet regularly and against the Wolves this week, she will be going up against another big pack, like last time out versus Bradford.