Ones to Watch this week
SL. Magic. Rhinos v HullFC. Sat4thSept2021.© MATTHEW MERRICK PHOTOGRAPHY
This week sees a number of our Rhinos teams take to the field. The first team headline the week with a Friday night clash with St Helens in the Betfred Super League, then over the weekend, Leeds Rhinos Women and Under-19s are in action against Wigan Warriors Women and Bradford Bulls Under-19s on Sunday afternoon. Plus, the Leeds Rhinos Foundation PDRL side are also in action on Saturday against Wire PDRL.
Take a look at five players to look out for in those games:
1. Morgan Gannon
Among the young Leeds players that have stepped up in 2021, second rower Morgan Gannon has been one of the most consistent performers under the guidance of head coach Richard Agar.
At the Dacia Magic Weekend against Hull FC, Gannon was one of nine players that was on the field for the full eighty minutes. Along with Rhyse Martin and Kruise Leeming, the trio were the only Leeds forwards not to be substituted during the match and up against the likes of international stars Manu Ma’u, Jordan Johnstone and Andre Savelio, the 18-year old stood shoulder to shoulder with his opposite numbers.
In his last three games, Gannon has averaged over thirty tackles and produced 10 tackle busts. This week’s game against St Helens will be a new challenge though for the youngster as he faces off against the reigning Super League champions for the first time this season; James Bentley, who joins Leeds in 2022, will most likely be Gannon’s opposite number.
2. Alfie Edgell
As the Under-19s season approaches its final few matches, one of the players that has made a bright start to life in the academy is Alfie Edgell.
Edgell, who played his junior rugby at Kippax along with team mates Max Simpson, Bailey Aldridge and Ethan Spear, is only in his first season in the Under-19s but has been a positive edition to Chev Walker’s side since he made his Academy debut against Newcastle at Emerald Headingley. He has played across the field in his first five matches but has solidified his place at full back in recent weeks, including against the Giants last Friday. Playing the full eighty minutes, Edgell combined nicely with half backs Jack Mallinson, Oli Burton and Jack Sinfield, which is a combination that will be on show again this week against Bradford.
3. Lucy Murray
After last week’s match against St Helens was called off due to Leeds being unable to field a team, Leeds Rhinos Women will be back in action this week against Wigan Warriors as Lois Forsell’s side edges closer to the Betfred Women’s Super League Grand Final.
In their most recent match against York City Knights Ladies, one of the stand out players was forward Lucy Murray who has worked her way into Forsell’s starting line up in her first season with the first team. So far in 2021, the Academy product has played in eight games, three of which she has started (vs Warrington Wolves, Castleford Tigers and York), and she also has one try, which came in the 76-0 win over Wakefield Trinity Ladies in round three.
Despite being one of the youngest in the team, she has dominated her opposite number with speed and strength during this year’s play off campaign, notably Challenge Cup and Grand Finalist Hollie Dodd and Yorkshire Women’s representative Daisy Sanderson.
4. Jack Broadbent
After nine weeks on the sidelines with an ankle injury, Jack Broadbent made his long awaited return to action against Hull FC at the Dacia Magic Weekend and looked as though he had never missed a minute of action.
Coming into the new season after making his first team debut in 2020, Broadbent was tipped to be one of Leeds’ most exciting homegrown talents and so far, he hasn’t disappointed. Despite playing at centre during his time in the Under-19s, Broadbent has proved a utility for Agar in 2021, starting in centre against Wakefield in round one before shifting into the full back and wing positions.
Against Hull last Saturday, he was back at full back, as Richie Myler moved into the halves, and once again Broadbent was helping lead the line along with Ash Handley and Luke Briscoe. Not only did he extend his try tally for the season to nine as he levelled the score on 71 minutes, but the youngster also made the fourth most metres out of the Leeds squad and the third most runs by a Rhinos player on the field.
This week sees Broadbent go head to head with a fellow young player of the year candidate in Jack Welsby. The two players have had standout seasons, with Welsby notably leading St Helens’ try scoring charts, and the match will also mark the first meeting between the two since their days in the Academy.
5. Pete Clarke
They don’t come much tougher than Pete Clarke, and the 46-year-old has shown no signs of slowing down during an outstanding debut season with Leeds Rhinos PDRL.
Clarke, a qualified chef who now owns his company managing a restaurant and a tea room, was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disorder in March 2016, degenerative neurological disease which effects movement, range and power. Having played with Keswick RUFC for almost a decade before his diagnosis, Clarke was inspired by the story of the late James Addyman who represented the Rhinos PDRL side during the 2018 season, deciding to travel down from Cumbria to give it a try. He instantly fell in love with the sport, and continues to make the five-hour round trip to training each week to be part of the PDRL set up.
After nailing down his place in the Rhinos PDRL side with a string of impressive performances and 4 tries in his first 6 appearances, Clarke was also selected to play in the first ever Yorkshire v Lancashire PDRL Origin fixture in August 2021 and will be harbouring hopes of representing England at the inaugural PDRL World Cup next year.
Outside of rugby, Clarke has also completed multiple Ironman Triathlon challenges, competed in the F38 Javelin category and raced in elite para-duathlon championships, coming in 4th place at the British Para-Triathlon Championship in 2019.
Tickets for our away trip to St Helens can be purchased over the phone on 0371 423 1315 (Monday to Friday 10:30am – 3:30pm) or online at tickets.therhinos.co.uk.
*Please be aware that the ticket office at Emerald Headingley Stadium is not open on non-match days.
|East Stand – Standing behind the posts||North Stand – Reserved Seating along one side of the pitch|
|Senior (aged 65+)||£16||£19|
|Young Adult (aged 19 to 21)||£16||£19|
|Youth (aged 17 to 18)||£13||£15.50|
|Juniors (aged 5 to 16)||£10||£10|
|Junior Under 5s**||FREE||Free|
*Junior Season ticket holders no longer receive the away games as part of the benefit but can purchase a junior ticket at £5 before matchday. Customer number is require at point of sale. These cannot be done on the day on the turnstiles at St. Helens, however, they can be done via the St. Helens ticket office on match night.
**Under 5’s and Companion’s tickets are unavailable online and must be ordered via Leeds Rhinos Ticket Office.7
For more information, click here.
For our Women’s final play off match at Sports Park, Weetwood, we ask for a minimum suggested donation of £5 for adults and concessions (senior citizens 65 & over and students) / FREE for Juniors aged 16 & under with donations going to Leeds Rhinos Foundation. Tickets are not pre-sold and it will be cash only on match day. The game will also be live on Twitch and OurLeague.
Reaction from our Under-19s clash will be available later next week and follow Leeds Rhinos Foundation on Twitter to follow how our PDRL side gets on against the Wolves