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With the Salford Red Devils guaranteeing themselves Super League rugby in 2019, tonight it was the turn of the Leeds Rhinos and Toronto Wolfpack to bite their nails and be the masters of their own destiny.

A Toronto win by more than thirty-two points would guarantee them back-to-back promotions and entry into the top flight,while potentially pushing the Rhinos into the Million Pound Game. A Rhinos win, draw, or loss by less than thirty-two points would mean that the Rhinos would be safe and it would probably be Toronto in the end of season decider, most likely as the away side.

The first ever meeting between these two sides couldn’t have come at a more crucial time for both clubs. 

Both sides started nervy with early mistakes, dropping balls, and failing to find touch with kicks.

The Wolfpack scored the games' opener through Cory Paterson after he took a a Gareth O’Brien pass in an acre of space to go ten metres to the line and ground. O’Brien added the conversion and the Rhinos were rocked.

The Rhinos struck back on eighteen when Tom Briscoe picked up and grounded a Jordan Thompson grubber to the corner. Liam Sutcliffe was unable to convert, the Rhinos two points adrift.

O’Brien added a long-distance penalty, from directly in front of the sticks, to double the Wolfpack lead on twenty-two.

The Rhinos hit the front on twenty-six when Sutcliffe jumped to collect a Richie Myler high kick as it came down under the cross-bar, picking the Wolfpack defenders pocket. Sutcliffe added the conversion for 10-8. 

With just seconds left on the Rawsthorne benefitted from a Wheeler one-on-one ball steal when the Wolfpack moved the ball right with the Toronto centre going over on the overlap. O’Brien was unable to add the extras, the visitors a deserved 12-10 ahead at the break.

The lead switched back to the Rhinos with the second half a quarter of an hour old when Jimmy Keinhorst stretched for the line after crashing the defence off a Brad Dwyer pass. Sutcliffe’s conversion went over off the far upright for 16-12.

Matty Russell levelled the scores on sixty-five picking up a Bob Beswick grubber kick by the left corner flag to dive over . O’Brien was unable to add the conversion but the sides were all tied up with fifteen minutes to play.

A crusher tackle saw Dom Crosby sin-binned on sixty-eight and it would prove to be the critical moment. Leeds then went close but Josh McCrone attempted a drop goal on seventy-two which went just wide of the uprights, and a minute later a Richie Myler attempt also drifted wide.

On seventy-five O’Brien kicked a brilliant forty-eight metre drop goal for a one point Toronto lead by 17-16.

Moon failed to find the target with drop goal in the last second and Toronto had a famous victory over last seasons Champions.

It was a terrific win for the Toronto Wolfpack and puts them in the position of possible automatic promotion, and a minimum of being the home side in the Million Pound Game. The Rhinos are safe, by courtesy of points difference, but will be embarrassed at their inability to beat a side who were playing two divisions below them a couple of seasons ago. All credit to Toronto who went to Headingley with a came plan and executed it to the word, their dream of Super League edged a little closer.

Rhinos:  Golding, Briscoe T (T), Keinhorst (T), Moon, Briscoe L, Sutcliffe (T, 2G), Myler, Peteru, Parcell, Crosby (SB on 68), Jones-Buchanan, Ferres, Thompson.  Subs:  Dwyer, Smith, Mullally, Cuthbertson.

Wolfpack: O’Brien (2G, DG), Russell (T), Rawsthorne (T), Wheeler, Caton-Brown, McCrone, Wallace, Sims, Beswick, Lussick, Dixon, Paterson (T), Emmitt.  Subs: Ackers, Sidlow, Krasniqi, Buchanan.

Referee: Robert Hicks.

Half-Time: 10-12.

Full-Time: 16-17.

Attendance: .



Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Fri 28th Sep 2018 9:47 PM | Views : 1481 | Replies : 0 | BACK TO STORIES
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