Stats Pack: Huddersfield Giants

Leeds Rhinos start a run of three games in nine days over the Easter period on Thursday night when they welcome Huddersfield Giants to Headingley, KO 8pm.

Tickets are available at tickets.therhinos.co.uk or by calling the ticket office on 0371 423 1315.

Fans can get two games for the price of one too as the Rhinos Under-18s play as a curtain raiser beforehand, plus Greatest Hits Radio’s Martin Kemp will also be bringing his 80s classics in a special pre match DJ set.

Before the teams run out, here are some of the key stats, figures and facts about both Jamie Jones-Buchanan and Ian Watson’s sides.

*Stats courtesy of OPTA


2022 Breakdown

Overall, Leeds have played Huddersfield in the league 192 times, winning 109 of them (57%). In the Super League era, when the Giants first joined in 1998, Huddersfield only won one regular season match in the first eleven years (excluding 2002 when they played in the Northern Ford Premiership). The Rhinos’ longest unbeaten record at both home and away came between 2004 and 2009 as Leeds won 12 matches but more recently, Huddersfield have been the more dominant against Leeds. Last year, the Giants edged the Rhinos in a close contest at the John Smith’s Stadium, before Leeds fought back with a 18-12 win at Headingley.

Leeds continue to be one of the best teams for metre making in Super League, thanks to the continued work of outside backs Ash Handley, Liam Sutcliffe, Jack Walker and Tom Briscoe. Forwards Cam Smith and Mikolaj Oledzki lead for the club in tackles (a metric which Leeds rank sixth overall in). Kruise Leeming’s three 40/20s also puts Leeds as the joint best with Toulouse.

Huddersfield on the other hand are just behind St Helens in points scored this season. Chris McQueen has led the scoring effort with six of the Giants’ 31 tries so far, plus talented youngster Will Pryce has 30 points too. Watson’s side have risen to first in set completion, territory and possession percentages, thanks to their disciplined attacking style, plus they also sit second in tackle breaks and third in line breaks.

Like Leeds, the number of metres they have made is high, including post contact metres, which is a metric they rank first in. On their defensive side, although they have made the second-least amount of tackles in the league this season (only Saints have made less), their tackle efficiency is the best in the division. This is mostly down to the fact that they have missed the least tackles too.


Head to head

Rhinos captain Kruise Leeming and one of Super League’s newest hookers Danny Levi go head to head for the first time this season.

Leeming may not have as many tries as he had by this point last season but the hooker has been one of the most involved players in Leeds’ points scoring this season. With two try assists and a further three try involvements, he ranks behind Ash Handley and Aidan Sezer in creating and scoring Leeds’ points in 2022, plus he also sits third out of the Super League hookers in dummy half run metres. In defence, he ranks third in the Leeds camp with 189 tackles – 41 of which came in the defeat to St Helens last time out.

Levi, who joined the Giants after a six year period in the NRL, was part of a strong recruitment drive by the Giants and it is bearing fruit already after their good start to the season. The former Newcastle Knight has hit the ground running since arriving at the John Smith’s Stadium and already sits as the club’s third highest try assister (behind Olly Russell and Tui Lolohea), fourth highest offloader and fifth highest tackler.

Against his Super League competition, he sits second in dummy half metres with 358 (Matt Parcell leads the metric with 503). Last time out against Catalans, he led Huddersfield in tackles made and also grabbed a first try in his new colours.


Stats Standout from Round 6: Leeds Rhinos

In a tough defeat to the reigning champions St Helens last time out, loose forward Cam Smith, who made his 100th career appearance, was one of Leeds’ top performers.

Smith led the Rhinos forwards in all run metres – compared to Leeds’ squad he ranked fourth behind Jack Broadbent, Ash Handley and Blake Austin – but only Handley made more metres post contact than the former Castleford Panther. In defence, his 52 tackles is the most he’s made in a single game all season, the next best was Leeming on 41. That total put Smith up to fourth in tackles made in Super League this season.

He also managed two offloads against a stubborn St Helens defence and also led the forwards in carries too.


Stats Standout from Round 6: Huddersfield Giants

Chris Hill topped the Man of Steel points chart in round seven for his performance against Catalans Dragons.

The standout stat in particular was the prop’s 24 carries. It is the most that Hill has made in 2022 and the second most made by a player in a single game this season (Samisoni Langi recorded 25 against Warrington in round four). That contributed to Hill making the most metres made by a player in the game (250 metres) as well as the most post contact metres (99 metres). The next best in both categories was fellow Giant Chris McQueen.


Milestones

Tom Briscoe

Outside back Tom Briscoe is set to play his 300th Super League match tomorrow night. Since debuting for Hull FC in 2008, he amassed 134 league appearances in black and white before swapping to the blue and amber of Leeds from 2014. Tomorrow’s game will be his 166th league appearance for the Rhinos.

Blake Austin

Half back Blake Austin is one appearance away from playing his 200th career game. Prior to signing for the Rhinos, Austin has previously played domestically for Warrington Wolves (67), Canberra Raiders (88), Wests Tigers (19) and Penrith Panthers (15). He also has two Great Britain caps and a NSW City appearance.

Tom Briscoe

Briscoe is set to hit another milestone against the Giants. Alongside his 300th Super League appearance, he can also play his 200th game for the Rhinos. During his eight year stay at Headingley, he has scored 92 tries for the club and won two Grand Finals, three Challenge Cups and a League Leaders’ Shield.

Chris Hill

Huddersfield forward Chris Hill is set to make his 500th career appearance against the Rhinos. Having made his name at Warrington, where he made 297 appearances and captained the club, he has also played 160 times for Leigh Centurions. Internationally, he has four caps for Great Britain and 30 caps for England.


Team News


Ticket Information

Ahead of the Betfred Super League game against Huddersfield Giants that kicks off at 8pm, Greatest Hits Radio DJ and Spandau Ballet member Martin Kemp will be throwing it back to the 80s in a fun filled DJ set. With songs from Culture Club, Wham! and Dexy’s Midnight Runners there’ll be plenty of of anthems from the decade to get the crowd dancing and singing pre match.

There’s also more rugby action from the Rhinos Under-18s Academy, who return to the Headingley field for the pre match curtain raiser at 5.45pm. In their last game the team put in a great performance, with some stand out tries, against Hull KR that got the crowd on their feet and Chev Walker’s side are set to do it all again next week with a must-see clash against Wigan Warriors.

There will also be fun for younger fans with balloon modellers and face painters around the ground, plus there will also be a DJ in the South Stand and Long Bar.

Buying tickets

Tickets for the Huddersfield match are available to buy now. To buy online, go to tickets.therhinos.co.uk or call the ticket office on 0371 423 1315 (opening hours: Monday-Friday).