Clarkson believes former club Leeds approaching their best again

Hull Kingston Rovers forward Chris Clarkson believes former side Leeds Rhinos are slowly approaching their very best once again.

Clarkson returns to Headingley tonight with Leeds, looking to inflict a first defeat of the Qualifiers on the Rhinos, extending KR’s winning start to the ‘middle eight’ in the process.

But he told the club’s official website that they will have to be wary of a Rhinos side who are near their peak – with six wins from their last seven games hinting Brian McDermott’s side are slowly finding their form of last year.

“They’re not far off, they’re there or thereabouts. They’ve got some bodies back and they’re playing some decent rugby at the minute,” he said.

“They’ve come into form over the last few weeks and they’ve beaten some pretty decent teams. Their new hooker, James Segeyaro, he’s added some structure to their game and he’s looking pretty good, so we’ve got to watch out for him.

“They’ve been missing their outside backs for most of the year but they’re back now and we all know how good Ryan Hall and Tom Briscoe are.”

However, Clarkson insists that following a confidence-building win against Batley in week one of the Qualifiers, there is no reason why the Robins should fear the challenge at hand tonight.

“We played some good stuff against Batley last week, with some good structure, and we need to take that into this game. It’s a step up but it can be done and we’ve been working towards this one,” he said.

“We had the week off for the Challenge Cup, then we played Batley and now we play Leeds. We’ve been preparing towards it and we’ll go their full of confidence. We’re ready for it and we’ve trained well.”