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Catalans Dragons 33 Leeds Rhinos 20

Leeds Rhinos lost out against Catalans Dragons 33-20 after fighting back from 14-0 to put the game in the balance with less than twenty minutes to go before the home side ran in three late tries.

The Rhinos arrived in Perpignan without eleven first team players but they made life even harder from themselves in the opening exchanges.

Catalans opened the scoring after six minutes when Benjamin Julliensupported the break near the Rhinos line and went over for the opening try, converted by Josh Drinkwater.

The Dragons kept the pressure up after that following a couple of penalties in midfield and eventually the Rhinos defence broke and Benjamin Garcia benefitted from the offload 15 metres from the visitors line. Drinkwater missed the conversion attempt but his side led 10-0 after as many minutes.

Steve McNamara’s side crossed for a third try after 19 minutes when Michael McIlorum spotted some tired defence on the Rhinos try line after a long spell of Catalans pressure and went over from dummy half. Drinkwater was on target again to make it 16-0.

Catalans were then denied a try by the officials when the video referee agreed with the on field call by James Child for no try when Tony Gigot collected a ball from an offside position after passing into the face of team mate Jullien.

The Rhinos grew into the game after that, helped by a couple of defensive sets when they avoided being penalised late on in the set, and they eventually got their reward. Just prior to the try, Jordan Lilley had released Ash Handley on the last tackle but the centre could not get the ball away to Ryan Hall. However the Rhinos completed the next opportunity as Lilley released Handley, the centre burst clear before passing inside to Richie Myler, who slid a kick into the corner for Handley to touch down. It was impressive from Myler, who had just been clattered by former team mate Sam Moa with a high shot that referee James Child thought only warranted a spell in the sin bin.

However, the Rhinos could not make their numerical advantage count and it was the home side who extended their lead just before the break when Tony Gigot kicked a drop goal to make it 17-4 at the break.

There was a nervous moment at the start of the second half when Leeds captain Stevie Ward had a lengthy period of treatment on the field before thankfully being able to regain his feet and play on.

The Rhinos crossed for a second try just five minutes into the second half with an excellently created score for Brett Ferres, with the pass and the forwards run timed to perfection to open up the space for the try. Lilley added the conversion to cut the lead to 17-10.

Leeds then put themselves in a great position with a third try. The chance was created by a great piece of defence from Ashton Golding as he stopped a dangerous break from an offload by Catalans and stripped the ball back for his team in one movement. The Rhinos went on the attack with Ash Handley put Ryan Hall in space and the winger took three would be tacklers over the line with him. The conversion attempt was missed but the Rhinos were now a try away from the lead.

The visitors had two great chances to go in front. The first came from a superb offload by Adam Cuthbertson to Jack Walker. The full back raced clear and was only stopped by a high tackle from Jodie Broughton. Referee James Child penalised the Dragons winger but did not deem stopping the try as worthy of a yellow card and he remained on the field. The next chance the Rhinos only had themselves to blame when Myler’s pass to Hall was too high and the winger could not pull it in.

The Dragons then punished Leeds with two quick fire tries to seal the win. Gigot cut back inside the defence to score first of all and then, from the short kick off, Catalans moved the ball wide and eventually Drinkwater stepped his way through the defence to score. He converted his own try to give the home side a 29-14 lead with 12 minutes to go.

Leeds had to try and find a way back but they were undone when Catalans moved the ball the full width of the pitch to put Jodie Broughton in at the corner to wrap up the two points.

The Rhinos did score the last try of the game when Brad Dwyer went over on the hooter, converted by Lilley, but it was scant consolation in the end for the Rhinos.

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Catalans Dragons 33 Leeds Rhinos 20

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Catalans Dragons 33 Leeds Rhinos 20

Leeds Rhinos lost out against Catalans Dragons 33-20 after fighting back from 14-0 to put the game in the balance with less than twenty minutes to go before the home side ran in three late tries.

The Rhinos arrived in Perpignan without eleven first team players but they made life even harder from themselves in the opening exchanges.

Catalans opened the scoring after six minutes when Benjamin Julliensupported the break near the Rhinos line and went over for the opening try, converted by Josh Drinkwater.

The Dragons kept the pressure up after that following a couple of penalties in midfield and eventually the Rhinos defence broke and Benjamin Garcia benefitted from the offload 15 metres from the visitors line. Drinkwater missed the conversion attempt but his side led 10-0 after as many minutes.

Steve McNamara’s side crossed for a third try after 19 minutes when Michael McIlorum spotted some tired defence on the Rhinos try line after a long spell of Catalans pressure and went over from dummy half. Drinkwater was on target again to make it 16-0.

Catalans were then denied a try by the officials when the video referee agreed with the on field call by James Child for no try when Tony Gigot collected a ball from an offside position after passing into the face of team mate Jullien.

The Rhinos grew into the game after that, helped by a couple of defensive sets when they avoided being penalised late on in the set, and they eventually got their reward. Just prior to the try, Jordan Lilley had released Ash Handley on the last tackle but the centre could not get the ball away to Ryan Hall. However the Rhinos completed the next opportunity as Lilley released Handley, the centre burst clear before passing inside to Richie Myler, who slid a kick into the corner for Handley to touch down. It was impressive from Myler, who had just been clattered by former team mate Sam Moa with a high shot that referee James Child thought only warranted a spell in the sin bin.

However, the Rhinos could not make their numerical advantage count and it was the home side who extended their lead just before the break when Tony Gigot kicked a drop goal to make it 17-4 at the break.

There was a nervous moment at the start of the second half when Leeds captain Stevie Ward had a lengthy period of treatment on the field before thankfully being able to regain his feet and play on.

The Rhinos crossed for a second try just five minutes into the second half with an excellently created score for Brett Ferres, with the pass and the forwards run timed to perfection to open up the space for the try. Lilley added the conversion to cut the lead to 17-10.

Leeds then put themselves in a great position with a third try. The chance was created by a great piece of defence from Ashton Golding as he stopped a dangerous break from an offload by Catalans and stripped the ball back for his team in one movement. The Rhinos went on the attack with Ash Handley put Ryan Hall in space and the winger took three would be tacklers over the line with him. The conversion attempt was missed but the Rhinos were now a try away from the lead.

The visitors had two great chances to go in front. The first came from a superb offload by Adam Cuthbertson to Jack Walker. The full back raced clear and was only stopped by a high tackle from Jodie Broughton. Referee James Child penalised the Dragons winger but did not deem stopping the try as worthy of a yellow card and he remained on the field. The next chance the Rhinos only had themselves to blame when Myler’s pass to Hall was too high and the winger could not pull it in.

The Dragons then punished Leeds with two quick fire tries to seal the win. Gigot cut back inside the defence to score first of all and then, from the short kick off, Catalans moved the ball wide and eventually Drinkwater stepped his way through the defence to score. He converted his own try to give the home side a 29-14 lead with 12 minutes to go.

Leeds had to try and find a way back but they were undone when Catalans moved the ball the full width of the pitch to put Jodie Broughton in at the corner to wrap up the two points.

The Rhinos did score the last try of the game when Brad Dwyer went over on the hooter, converted by Lilley, but it was scant consolation in the end for the Rhinos.