General Leeds Beat St Helens in GF 32 to 16

BigD_old

Guest
Some old Warriors where in this mornings Final:

Brett Webb (Leeds), Ali Lauitiiti (leeds) Francis Meli (St Helens)

https://news.bbc.co.uk/sport2/hi/rugby_league/9606230.stm

Rob Burrow scored an Old Trafford stunner and set up Ryan Hall's decisive try as Leeds once again saw off St Helens to win the Grand Final.

Saints thought they would at last beat Leeds in Super League's showpiece at the fourth attempt when they came from 8-2 down at the break to lead 16-8.

But Brian McDermott's men turned it round with tries from Brent Webb, Hall, Carl Ablett and Zak Hardaker. Kevin Sinfield kicked five goals, but Burrow was man of the match.

The little scrum-half, who has controversially been used from the bench for much of the season by coach McDermott, proved a clear winner of the Harry Sunderland Trophy, picking up 100% of the vote.

But it was also a triumph for McDermott, the first English coach to get his hands on the trophy since Brian Noble in 2005, as Leeds equalled Saints' record of five Super League wins by handing the opposition a fifth straight final defeat.

After enjoying four Grand Final victories between 1999 and 2006, Saints had lost on their last four visits to Old Trafford - three times to Leeds, before last year's 22-10 defeat by Wigan.

All their previous contests had been table-topping clashes - and this one was a meeting between third and fifth.

The boys were fantastic. We really dug deep, it's been a rough season. (But) with the character in the team we never give in

The ominous outlook at kick-off time for Saints was the state of the Manchester weather.
A day of rain had left a slippery, rain-sodden pitch - and the sort of conditions that the Rhinos exploited to the full on their three previous victorious Old Trafford meetings with the Merseysiders.

Leeds twice nearly exploited their early dominance, an interception break from near his own line down the middle by Brett Delaney only ending when he ran out of steam, before Hall's burst down the left ended with a loose pass.

It took until the 25th minute to register the first points on the board when Jamie Peacock was adjudged to have interfered with Lee Gaskell at the play-the-ball, Jamie Foster kicking the penalty.

But Leeds were level within three minutes when Saints were similarly penalised - and Sinfield slotted a 35-metre penalty.

Then, on 33 minutes, came the moment that set Old Trafford alight as Burrow, receiving on the halfway line, dipped his diminutive frame under the first tackle that came his way before magically weaving his way on a 50-metre run past four more Saints players to go under the posts for one of the great Grand Final tries.

There were a few places (earlier in the season) where we got a good hiding, got our bottoms smacked, but it's not how you start it's how you finish

It looked as if Saints might get back on level terms within five minutes of the restart when Andrew Dixon thought he had scored in a scramble close to the posts, only for a much-delayed video decision to rule that he had knocked on as he slid towards the line.

But, just minutes later, Tom Makinson did earn an even more controversial verdict with an even messier try when, with Leeds full-back Webb trying to guide a grubber kick out of play, the Saints winger clearly got downward pressure on the ball, video ref Ben Thaler overlooking the fact that he had split seconds earlier touched the ball with his outstretched fingertips.

To the delight of Saints fans and indignation from the Leeds contingent, Foster added the extras to tie it up again at 8-8 and, within five minutes, Saints were in again through centre Shenton close to the right corner.

Foster missed the conversion but quickly atoned with two penalties - one from the halfway line - to give Saints an eight-point cushion going into the final quarter.

But Leeds were back to within two points on 64 minutes when Webb sneaked over on the left, Sinfield kicking the goal.

It was all square again at 16-16 four minutes later when Sinfield's 45-metre penalty sailed between the posts.

Then came Burrow's second major intervention as another dazzling run by the little Number 7 set up Hall to go in at the corner for his 32nd try of the season.

Late efforts from Ablett and Hardaker followed to ice the cake on Leeds' fourth - and most unlikely - Super League win in five years.

LINE-UPS
St Helens: Wellens, Makinson, Shenton, Meli, Foster, Gaskell, Lomax, Graham, Roby, Puletua, Wilkin, Soliola, Clough.
Replacements: Moore, McCarthy-Scarsbrook, Wheeler, Dixon.


Leeds: Webb, Jones-Bishop, Hardaker, Ablett, Hall, Sinfield, McGuire, Leuluai, Buderus, Peacock, Jones-Buchanan, Delaney, Clarkson.
Replacements: Burrow, Lauitiiti, Bailey, Kirke.

Att: 69,107
Referee: Phil Bentham (Warrington)
 

Viking_old

Guest
Awesome Rhino's! A great sendoff for Ali and Buderus too.

Ali was already the most successful foreign player in Rhinos history. This win makes it 5 championships and 2 WCC titles since he joined them in 2004.
 
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