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Leeds Rhinos

2017 Super League Champions

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Melbourne Storm v Leeds Rhinos, Friday 16th February

13th November 2017

By Phil Daly

Betfred Super League champions Leeds Rhinos will travel to Australia to take on NRL Premiers Melbourne Storm in the 2018 World Club Challenge.

The clash, to determine the world’s best Rugby League team, will be held on Friday 16 February at AAMI Park at 8pm. It will be only the third time the World Club Challenge has been played in Australia; with Brisbane and Sydney the other cities to have hosted the showcase event.

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Melbourne Storm and Leeds Rhinos have already met in three World Club Challenge deciders; 2008, 2010 and 2013, with Leeds Rhinos victorious in 2008 but Melbourne Storm winners in 2010 and 2013.

Rugby Football League Chief Commercial Officer and Super League Executive, Roger Draper, said: “The World Club Challenge is long established as one of the biggest clashes in club Rugby League and we are excited that Leeds Rhinos are travelling to Melbourne to represent the Betfred Super League and to take on the current NRL champions at their home ground.

“Super League (Europe) Ltd and the NRL have worked closely with both clubs to ensure that the 2018 World Club Challenge takes place and we are hopeful that this will be one of the biggest and best ever held. Both clubs were worthy champions and I am sure they will provide fantastic entertainment in Melbourne in February.”

This will mark the first time Leeds have played for the World Club Challenge outside the UK, looking to claim their fourth world title with their last coming in 2014 against Manly Sea Eagles. This will be Storm’s fifth appearance on the world stage, having claimed victories in 2000, 2010 and 2013.

Leeds Rhinos Chief Executive Gary Hetherington who was at the World Club Challenge launch in Sydney, said: “Winning the World Club Challenge is the ultimate achievement for all Super League and NRL teams and we are excited to be coming to Melbourne to take on the best club team I have seen.

“Leeds Rhinos and Melbourne Storm have been rugby league’s two most successful teams over the past 20 years and it’s fitting for us to come together for the fourth time in the World Club Challenge. Each of the other three games in Leeds have been terrific contests and coming to Melbourne represents our biggest ever challenge. A victory would be the pinnacle in our Club’s 128 year history. We hope all the English living in Melbourne come along to support the Rhinos and our fans who visit the City will have a memorable experience.”

This match will kick-off Storm’s 2018 campaign, with the Melbourne Club confirming it will look to field its strongest line-up as it contests for another trophy.

Melbourne Storm CEO Dave Donaghy said: “There’s no better venue or city to host a game that decides the world’s best rugby league team than AAMI Park and Melbourne – Australia’s sporting capital.

“It will be fantastic to see Rugby League take centre stage again at AAMI Park, having hosted record Storm crowds and the Rugby League World Cup in 2017. I know our Storm members and fans as well as the sports enthusiast will come out to support their Premiership winning team and to see some of the world’s best players take the field.

“Our football department is looking forward to the challenge of being back playing for the World Club Challenge trophy and testing themselves again the current Super League Champions.”

Tickets are on-sale to Storm and Leeds members today at ticketek.com.au with public on-sale to follow at 10am Tuesday 21 November.

OFFICIAL TRAVEL PACKAGE

We can now reveal our official travel packages for the World Club Challenge in Melbourne with fans able to travel to the game from £2,200 per person.

The package, in conjunction with Glory Days, includes exclusive events to meet the players out in Melbourne as well as other Rugby League personalities and watch the team train ahead of the massive clash against the Storm.

We are offering two packages for this trip of a lifetime experience. You can either choose to spend nine days in Melbourne or if you fancy heading to Sydney after the Rhinos clash with the Storm to see the double header involving Wigan Warriors and Hull FC we have a trip that includes three nights in Melbourne and an additional five nights in Sydney.

The package is based on two sharing, single supplement charges apply, at four-star accommodation and includes breakfast each day.

Fans can book their place now with a £1,000 non-refundable deposit per person with the balance due eight weeks before the game.

The Melbourne trip will depart on Saturday 10th February, leaving Melbourne on Sunday 18thFebruary to return to the UK. The fully escorted trip includes economy international flights, airport transfers, match tickets, exclusive tour merchandise and a number of exclusive Rhinos events throughout the week that no other organised tour will have access to. The nine days, seven nights trip is from £2,400 per person, based on two people sharing or there is a £700 single room supplement.

Alternatively, if you fancy a two-city trip, there is our option to depart on Tuesday 13th February arriving in Melbourne on Valentine’s Day. You will have three nights in Melbourne, including watching the Rhinos take on Melbourne Storm before heading off to Sydney the next day to see Wigan and Hull FC take on South Sydney Rabbitohs and St George Illawarra at ANZ Stadium. This package is ten days and eight nights in total and costs from £2,200 per person, based on two people sharing or there is a £600 single room supplement.

To reserve your place please email briana.powell@leedsrugby.com with your name and contact telephone number along with the trip you are interested in travelling on and we will get back in touch to confirm your booking.

World Club Challenge

Friday 16 February 2018

Melbourne Storm v Leeds Rhinos

8pm, AAMI Park

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Castleford Tigers 6 Leeds Rhinos 24

7th October 2017

By Leanne Flynn

Old Trafford arrived with its traditional Grand Final night down pour but that could not dampen the excitement from both sets of fans as a full house erupted when the teams took the field.

The Rhinos were appearing in their tenth Grand Final, the Tigers their first, and it was Leeds who struck first. A superb kick by Danny McGuire hung in the Manchester air long enough for Tom Briscoe to race up and collect before grounding for the opening try. Video referee Phil Bentham agreed with the on field decision and the Rhinos led. Kallum Watkins kicked a nerveless conversion to give his side a 6-0 lead after 12 minutes.

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Leeds thought they were in for a second score not long after. Once again it was McGuire’s kick that did the damage. Watkins chased through and looked to have got his hand down on the ball ahead of Michael Shenton. The on field decision was try but the video referee disagreed and instead said Watkins had knocked on.

The Tigers gained a foothold in the game after that with McShane and Gale pulling the strings against their former club. Leeds had to produce some fearsome defence to keep the League Leaders out in particular a vital tackle by Liam Sutcliffe on Greg Eden as the league’s top try scorer broke clear on a free play.

Castleford then had a try ruled out themselves by the video referee when they were adjudged to have obstructed in the build up to an effort by Jy Hitchcox.

Leeds had to once again hold firm on their own line but then looked like they had hit back when Briscoe raced through to touch down McGuire through kick on a free play. However, video referee Bentham once again over turned the online field decision and judged that Briscoe had pushed McShane off the ball.

Leeds did increase their lead on the stroke of half time when McGuire coolly slotted over a drop goal with the last play of the half to give his side a 7-0 advantage.

The second half saw the Rhinos turn the screw as they pressed home their advantage. Leeds crossed for their second try when a high kick was spilled by Eden and McGuire was on hand to pick up and go over. Watkins missed the conversion but the Rhinos now led 11-0.

That lead was increased further when Moon managed to get his hands free in the tackle to put Briscoe over in the corner for his second try of the game. Watkins added the conversion and the Rhinos now led 17-0.

With the wet weather making handling conditions very difficult for both tries, another score looked like it would be crucial for the Rhinos and the skipper delivered again as he chased through a spilled ball by the Tigers to touch it down between the posts. Watkins added the conversion to make it 23-0 to the Rhinos with ten minutes to play.

McGuire added a drop goal in the 77th minute before being announced as the Man of the Match and end a memorable night and career with the Rhinos. Castleford were not to be nilled and Alex Foster crossed for a last minute try and Luke Gale converted in the final kick of the game.

A fairytale ending for McGuire and Rob Buroow who secured their eighth Super League title in their final game for the club.

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