Leeds look to edge further into the play-offs at home to Warrington


In a repeat of the two side’s season opener, Leeds Rhinos will look to consolidate their position in the top six, but Warrington Wolves will be out for some revenge.

This brilliant Super League fixture has already been battled out twice this season, with a win for each side on their opponents home turf.

In the season opener it was the Wolves who got off to the perfect start coming from behind to win the game with a late try. After that match they continued winning a few matches until their season spiralled into disarray.

By the time the Rhinos returned to the Halliwell Jones Stadium in June, the Wolves were in terrible form and were thumped 4:40 on an embarrassing day for the club.

Warrington will be eager to get back at Leeds and holt their progress up the Super League table, whilst also ensuring their safety.

Mathematically, the Wolves can still finish either in the top six, or at the bottom of the table. However, neither of those outcomes are likely. Their season is set to come to a quiet end, but it is pivotal for coach Daryl Powell, to start getting results.

Since their excellent start to the season, Warrington have only won five times in 20 attempts. The task gets no easier with this specific fixture being played at Headingley, when Warrington have only won twice away from home all year.

Leeds have had a fairly decent year thus far. With a perfectly split record of 11 wins, 11 losses and one draw. However, their improved form will mean nothing to the Rhinos fans if they don’t see the season through and end up in the top six.

The battle for the last two places in the top six are boiling down to five clubs. Three will suffer the heartbreak of missing out, so a victory for Leeds on Friday night could go a long way for them to ensure they make it.

Leeds also have an extremely tough run in facing Huddersfield, Catalan and Castleford after the Wolves, but they come into the tail of the season with the best form in the league, winning all four of their last four games.

The Rhinos have also won their last six home games and are some people’s outside bets to possibly win the Super League altogether this year, given their excellent recent performances.

As for the team news, Rhinos coach Rohan Smith has named a 20 man squad with halfback Aidan Sezer, prop Matt Prior, and front rower Rhyse Martin all returning to bolster their squad.

Only one of last week’s 19 would of technically had to drop out of the squad, However, young centre Harry Newman and veteran front rower Bodene Thompson both miss out through injuries sustained last weekend.

Cameron Smith who was also injured in the victory over Hull KR, has been cleared fit and is in the 20 man squad.

As for the Wolves, they add four youngsters to their 21 man squad who could all make their senior debuts on Friday night, as coach Daryl Powell looks to freshen up his team.

Leon Hayes, Adam Holroyd, Luke Thomas and Tom Whitehead are welcomed into the squad along with the returning Riley Dean.

Powell’s five changes see Matt Davis, Tom Mikaele, Stefan Ratchford, Matty Nicholson and Conner Wrench all drop out of the squad.

Davis and Mikaele are unknown absents in the squad whilst Ratchford, Nicholson and Wrench all picked up injuries at last weekend’s victory over Toulouse.

The match is due to kick-off at 8pm at the Headingley Stadium in Leeds on Friday night.


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