Super League: Leeds Rhinos 38-16 Salford Red Devils – Leeming inspires Rhinos to victory

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Harry Newman shrugs off a Salford Red Devils tackle
Harry Newman (centre) set Leeds on their way at Emerald Headingley Stadium
Leeds Rhinos (20) 38
Tries: Newman, Leeming 2, McLelland, Vuniyayawa, Prior Goals: Martin 7
Salford Red Devils (0) 16
Tries: Sio, Lolohea, Inu Goals: Inu 2

Leeds Rhinos comfortably beat Salford Reds Devils to register their first win in three Super League games.

Harry Newman and Kruise Leeming crossed to put Leeds in control and Leeming’s second try made it 20-0 at the break.

Ken Sio got Salford off the mark but Callum McLelland and King Vuniyayawa went over for Leeds while the Red Devils had two men in the sin-bin.

Matt Prior rounded off the Rhinos scoring in between consolation efforts from Tui Lolohea and Krisnan Inu.

Victory keeps Richard Agar’s side in the hunt for a Super League play-off place, although they remain below sixth-placed Hull KR in the table on win percentage.

Leeds, who had lost their past two outings at the hands of leaders Catalans Dragons, hosted their first game without restrictions on crowd capacity since March 2020.

With no television match official at Emerald Headingley Stadium, Salford had an early Inu effort ruled out after referee Ben Thaler consulted his in-goal judge.

Two tries in as many minutes from centre Newman and hooker Leeming set the Rhinos on their way, and Rhyse Martin, back from a one-match ban, put in a flawless performance from the kicking tee.

Ninth-placed Salford improved in the second half and, with Tonga half-back Ata Hingano making his debut off the bench, threatened a comeback.

But the visitors lost momentum when Lolohea was shown yellow by Thaler for dissent and Seb Ikahihifo followed him to the sin-bin a minute later for an altercation with a Leeds player.

Kruise Leeming celebrates with Leeds Rhinos fans at full-time
Leeds Rhinos players celebrated with the crowd after full-time, with restrictions on capacity lifted at Emerald Headingley Stadium

Leeds coach Richard Agar told BBC Radio Leeds:

“We had a good energy about us in the first half and the crowd played their part in that. You forget how much you miss it.

“You are always looking for tidy performances, and we had a solid first half. At 20-0 we were good value for it.

“Salford played more expansively in the second half and asked us some questions. When they had 11 men they really moved the ball about well.

“There are some elements to brush up on but it is a step in the right direction for us.”

Salford coach Richard Marshall:

“We didn’t start well at all and conceded 20 points in the first half. There were some individual moments that we were pleased about, but we were caught in the headlights a little bit.

“Our discipline has cost us the game. We seem to unravel when we play Leeds – we did it three weeks ago and we have done it again.

“It is a simple lack of respect for the game, the ball and the referee.

“I have never seen a referee change his decision when someone answers back, and it will never happen.”

Leeds Rhinos: Myler, T Briscoe, Hurrell, Newman, Handley, McLelland, L Sutcliffe, Vuniyayawa, Leeming, Prior (capt), Mellor, Martin, O’Connor.

Interchanges: Donaldson, Smith, Dwyer, L Briscoe.

Sin-bin: Myler (78).

Salford Red Devils: Escare, Sio, Inu, Livett, Williams, Lolohea, Atkin, Mossop (capt), Ackers, Ormondroyd, Wells, Pauli, Lannon.

Interchanges: Hingano, Ikahihifo, Luckley, Roberts.

Sin-bin: Lolohea (50), Ikahihifo (51).

Referee: Ben Thaler (Wakefield).



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