Leeds Rhinos recruitment update as Rohan Smith discusses Kruise Leeming replacement

LEEDS RHINOS Rohan Smith not only had to contend with his side losing away at Castleford Tigers last night, but he has also had to deal with the impending exit of former captain Kruise Leeming.

Leeming handed in a transfer request earlier in the week, according to Smith.

“He requested a release and he has been given the opportunity to seek that,” Smith said.

“You would have to ask Kruise if it came out the blue.

“I’m not exactly sure of the timing, I found out earlier this week.”

Smith also didn’t know whether or not the issue was discussed in the squad as a whole.

“I’m not too sure when people were made aware of that situation but it hasn’t been discussed as a group.”

However, after being asked if the club would actively search a replacement, Smith was keen to emphasise that a replacement or replacements were already in the Leeds squad.

“I think Jarrod O’Connor is doing a terrific job and Corey Johnson is back to full health.

“James Bentley has played there as a kid and he has played limited minutes there since.”

It is unclear where Leeming’s next destination will take him, but the Eswatini-born hooker has been a key part of this Rhinos side since joining back in 2020.

That year, Leeming helped Leeds lift the Challenge Cup and has since made 61 appearances.