Rhinos defeat Hawks in nail-biter

Treble winners Leeds Rhinos survived an almighty scare from neighbours Hunslet, with a late Charlie Brown try securing them a 22-18 win in the Lazenby Cup.

The two teams went into the final minute locked at 18 apiece before Brown claimed a Jordan Lilley kick to the corner to win the match.

League One side Hunslet were ahead twice in the contest and produced a magnificent performance, with this display suggesting they will go strong in the third tier next season.

As for the Rhinos, their youthful side showed maturity above their age to win the contest in a performance that will have pleased Brian McDermott overall.

Hunslet’s Danny Ansell opened the scoring following an early penalty before two of Leeds’ senior players combined to level the match. Lilley burst through a gap before offloading to Mitch Garbutt to score.

But Hunslet regained their lead soon after when Richie Barnett dived over in the corner, although that lead was surrendered soon after when Lilley again created a gap for Josh Walters to crash over.

By half-time, the Rhinos were ahead. Lilley was the instigator once again, combining with Ashton Goulding racing through the line to give Leeds an 18-12 lead at the break.

Hunslet, however, weren’t willing to give in and eight minutes into the second-half Hunslet levelled the match when Mufaro Mvududu was the first to react to a loose ball to dive over for the Hawks. Simon Brown’s kick levelled the match.
From there, the game went back and forth, only for Leeds to win it with the late drama.

Hawks: Elliott, Agoro, Duckworth, Mvududu, Barnett, S Brown, Ansell, Carbutt, Flanagan, Reed, Crane, Normington, Mackay. Subs Lee, Tebb, Haley, Darby, Bell, Buttery, Milburn, Mapals, Watson.

Rhinos: Golding, Handley, Norfolk, Brierley, C Brown, Sanderson, Lilley, Garbutt, Brady, Baldwinson, Achurch, Jordan-Roberts. Subs Wray, Flynn, Smith, Hallas, Oledzki, Barker.

Referee: Mr. Roberts

Attendance: 1,196.