17th Apr 2017 by TSZ
Leeds Rhinos vs Widnes Vikings Preview
- Leeds bounced emphatically from the loss to Warrington by destroying Hull in East Yorkshire by scoring 52 points in one of their best performance of the season so confidence is high.
- Brian McDermott has been able to name an unchanged squad from that game so the team is relatively settled but they remain without the suspended duo of Singleton and Ferres once again.
- Liam Sutcliffe and Ashton Golding are two injury doubts that will face late fitness tests ahead of this game but they are confident that both will overcome head and thigh problems respectively.
Head Coach: Brian McDermott
Squad: Jordan Baldwinson, Tom Briscoe, Rob Burrow, Adam Cuthbertson, Brett Delaney, Keith Galloway, Mitch Garbutt, Ashton Golding, Ryan Hall, Jamie Jones-Buchanan, Jordan Lilley, Danny McGuire, Joel Moon, Anthony Mullally, Mikolaj Oledzki, Matt Parcell, Liam Sutcliffe, Stevie Ward, Kallum Watkins
Unavailable: Carl Ablett (Knee), Jimmy Keinhorst (Hand), Brett Ferres (Suspended), Brad Singleton (Suspended), Jack Ormondroyd (Knee), Josh Walters, Ash Handley
- Widnes lost the Cheshire derby against rivals Warrington on Thursday but they have had the benefit of one extra day of rest compared to Leeds as they aim to bounce back.
- Denis Betts has made six changes to the squad from last time out and they are missing skipper Joe Mellor which is a blow to them but Betts will hope the changes will add some energy and freshness to the side.
- The Vikings beat Leeds on their last visit to Headingley 23-22 last season so they will take some confidence from that but the general dynamic around the club is pretty negative at the moment.
Head Coach: Denis Betts
Squad: Patrick Ah Van, Tom Armstrong, Jack Buchanan, Greg Burke, Ted Chapelhow, Danny Craven, Chris Dean, Gil Dudson, Owen Farnworth, Tom Gilmore, Rhys Hanbury, Chris Houston, Jordan Johnstone, Stefan Marsh, Tom Olbison, Charly Runciman, Corey Thompson, Lloyd White, Matt Whitley
Unavailable: Hep Cahill (Knee), Eamon O'Carroll (Shoulder), Joe Mellor, Alex Gerrard, Jay Chapelhow, Chris Bridge, Sam Brooks, Aaron Heremaia, MacGraff Leuluai, Keanan Brand, Manase Manuokafoa
Analysis - what to expect
The Vikings are struggling badly right now with only one win so far this season and this is not the fixture they would want with such a quick turnaround in matches over the Easter period. Leeds are playing well and scoring plenty which does not bode well for the Vikings, who will not be able to match them in a shootout. A comfortable home win is on the horizon.