Super League: Hull KR 30-40 Leeds Rhinos
|Hull KR (24) 30|
|Tries: Kelly 2, Allgood, Campese, Welham Goals: Mantellato 5|
|Leeds (16) 40|
|Tries: McGuire 2, Briscoe, Sinfield, Watkins, Hardaker, Singleton Goals: Sinfield 6|
Leeds had to come from behind at Craven Park before finally winning a 12-try Super League opening weekend classic.
Rovers responded to Leeds winger Tom Briscoe's first-minute try with three of their own, including two from debutant Albert Kelly, to lead 18-4, going in still 24-16 up at the break.
But scrum-half Danny McGuire's second try of the afternoon was one of four second-half tries for the Rhinos.
Kevin Sinfield, who kicked six out of seven conversions, also crossed.
|Long way to go to match McGuire|
|Opposite numbers Danny McGuire and Albert Kelly were among six players to score a brace of tries on the opening weekend of the new season. Anthony Gelling (Wigan), Ben Jones-Bishop (Salford), Jamie Shaul (Hull) and Denny Solomona (Castleford) were the others. But Kelly has a long way to go to match McGuire's career total of 195 regular-season Super League tries.|
Centre Kallum Watkins, full-bac Zac Hardaker and substitute Brad Singleton, who wrapped up Leeds' victory three minutes from time, were the other Rhinos try scorers.
New skipper Terry Campese and centres Mitch Allgood and Kris Welham claimed the other three Rovers tries, while winger Josh Mantellato kicked four out of five conversions, as well as a first-half penalty for a 10-point individual haul.
Having trailed from the fifth minute onwards in front of a sell-out 11,811 crowd, a record for the redeveloped Craven Park, the Challenge Cup holders twice came back from a 14-point deficit.
It was not until 14 minutes from time that they led again when Hardaker darted through to score. And, as Rovers began to tire, Singleton went over to seal Leeds' victory.
Hull KR coach Chris Chester:
"There's lots of positives to take. We were the better side for 65 minutes. I'm disappointed with the result but happy with performance.
"It's frustrating losing 14 point leads because we're better than that defensively.
It's not nice conceding 40 points, but we'll get better. There were a few individuals who missed a few tackles but overall I'm proud of the effort."
Leeds Rhinos coach Brian McDermott:
"We can find ourselves fortunate to win. The bounce of ball and a couple of others things went our way. Defensively we were leaky but KR deserve a lot of credit. Their halves played very well and their pack was resilient.
"But I'm proud of the way we came from 14 down twice. That's not easily done. KR did very well getting away from us. But momentum swung our way at crucial times.
"We came here and played a lot more controlled last year. We will be better for the run-out. We conceded 30 points and we know we can't do that too often."
Hull KR: Dixon; Mantellato, Welham, Goulding, Sio; Campese, Kelly; Walker, Carlile, Allgood, McCarthy, Horne, Burke.
Replacements: Donaldson, Cockayne, Green, Blair.
Leeds: Hardaker; T Briscoe, Watkins, Moon, Hall; Sinfield, McGuire; Jones-Buchanan, Aiton, Peacock, Ablett, S Ward, Cuthbertson.
Replacements: Burrow, Achurch, Leuluai, Singleton.
Referee: Ben Thaler (RFL).