Leeds Rhinos bidding to retain Super League with new recruits
Matt Haynes | January 5, 2016
With half of their old guard retiring, including influential captain Kevin Sinfield, warrior Jamie Peacock and the irrepressible Kylie Leuluai, the Rhinos have embarked on a strategic recruitment programme in the off-season, which has seen them bring in three players with serious pedigree who can have a great effect on the new Super League campaign.
NRL duo, prop Keith Galloway and hooker Beau Falloon have arrived from down under, with both impressing in the Boxing Day clash against Wakefield Trinity Wildcats, with the latter giving so much that he suffered concussion twice.
Brett Ferres, recently arrived from Huddersfield Giants, is somewhat of a coup. His former club placed him on the transfer list after misconduct, and whether this was tactical to scare the player, it could well be a move that significantly backfires.
The 29-year-old second rower is as good a replacement for Peacock that the Rhinos will find and was the driving force behind England’s Tri-Nations win over New Zealand in the autumn.
On signing for the club, Ferres highlighted his delight at becoming a Rhinos player: “I would like to thank Gary Hetherington and Brian McDermott for making this move possible,” he said.
“The Rhinos are a fantastic organisation and I am looking forward to being part of the squad next season.
“The last year has seen plenty of ups and downs for me however this move gives me an opportunity to finally look forward to the future with confidence and be part of something special here at the Rhinos.”
Young Rhinos can continue to impress
Last campaign saw the emergence of a number of players from the youth team who took to first team duties like seasoned professionals.
Winger Ash Handley stormed onto the scene, becoming a regular source of tries, while Josh Walters and Jordan Lilley are both promising players.
It is highly anticipated that the remaining ‘old guard’, Danny McGuire and Rob Burrow could both announce their retirement soon, though in Kallum Watkins, Ryan Hall, Adam Cuthbertson, Zak Hardaker and Joel Moon, the Rhinos have more than enough to fill the void, with Challenge Cup final hero Tom Briscoe also a prodigious prospect.
Check out our extensive rugby league archive.