Match Report – Leeds Rhinos
Kane Linnett scored a hat-trick as Hull KR made it back-to-back Super League wins for the first time since July 2018 with a commanding 26-6 victory over Leeds Rhinos.
There were tries for Ryan Hall and Matt Parcell, too, against their old club on a near-perfect night for Rovers.
KR reporter James O’Brien delivers the verdict from Craven Park.
It felt like a big night for the new-look Robins as they look to prove they are a different beast in 2021.
Rovers have been plagued by inconsistency in recent times, with every win followed by a demoralising defeat.
With several quality additions on board, there was a sense they needed to nail their first attempt at securing consecutive victories.
That they did it with an accomplished performance will only add to the belief that KR can compete higher up the table this season.
Leeds won all three meetings at a canter in 2020 but they had no answer to the Robins from the moment Hall scored his 200th Super League try.
After two nailbiters in a row this one was serene by comparison, Rovers scoring five tries in all to send out a message to the rest of Super League.
Earlier in the week Hall said he did not know how he would feel playing against his former club but he soon had a familiar feeling after scoring a landmark try.
Rovers had already gone close on three occasions before Jordan Abdull kicked in behind early in the tackle count and Hall touched down after beating old mate Tom Briscoe to the ball.
The opener came on 10 minutes and KR had their second before the end of the first quarter, Parcell burrowing his way over after receiving the ball from Abdull on the last tackle.
Abdull was KR’s match-winner last week and he was at his influential best against the Rhinos, with Luis Johnson equally impressive on the right edge with some dazzling footwork.
Rovers were all over Leeds and had a deserved third try when Abdull stabbed a kick in behind and Linnett did the rest.
Abdull added the extras to make it 16-0 and for the third straight week the Robins had built up a commanding lead before the break.
But as they did on the previous two occasions, they let the opposition back in with Brad Dwyer darting over from dummy-half just before the half-hour mark.
KR steadied themselves and had the chance to make it 18-6 at half-time, only for Abdull’s long-range penalty attempt to fall short.
Leeds came out fired up after the restart with plenty of talk but little to back it up.
The next try felt crucial and it was Rovers who got it thanks to a powerplay on the short side, Linnett proving too strong after taking a pass from Parcell.
The Robins remained in control but there was always the threat of a Rhinos comeback as the game entered the final quarter.
Leeds looked as if they had given themselves a lifeline with 20 minutes to go when Luke Briscoe found himself in space out wide, only for the winger to lose the ball reaching for the tryline.
Dwyer then appeared to be over for his second after taking a Richie Myler pass from a quick penalty tap but it was called forward.
To compound Leeds’ woes Myler was sent to the sin bin for dissent and KR secured a hugely impressive win when Linnett completed his hat-trick after another lovely bit of play by Abdull.
The period after half-time was crucial after recent events but Rovers showed they had learned from those collapses as they weathered the storm relatively comfortably.
Good day – Luis Johnson
The young second-rower performed well without standing out in the previous games but he was hugely impressive on Friday night.
Bad day – Tom Briscoe
Abdull targeted the winger and he struggled from the moment he allowed Hall to sneak in to score.
Rovers head to the Halliwell Jones Stadium next Saturday to take on Warrington Wolves, the first of three games on the road either side of a break for the Challenge Cup. This win ensures they will go into that game full of confidence.
Hull KR: Adam Quinlan, Ethan Ryan, Brad Takairangi, Shaun Kenny-Dowall, Ryan Hall, Jordan Abdull, Rowan Milnes, Albert Vete, Matt Parcell, George King, Luis Johnson, Kane Linnett, George Lawler.
Bench: Dean Hadley, Jez Litten, Matty Storton, Muizz Mustapha.
Leeds: Ash Handley, Tom Briscoe, Alex Sutcliffe, Konrad Hurrell, Luke Briscoe, Kyle Eastmond, Richie Myler, Mikolaj Oledzki, Kruise Leeming, Matt Prior, Alex Mellor, Rhyse Martin, James Donaldson.
Bench: Brad Dwyer, King Vuniyayawa, Bodene Thompson, Jack Broadbent.Back To Latest News +