Leeds Rhinos defence key to beating Wigan - Sinfield

Challenge Cup semi-final - Leeds Rhinos v Wigan Warriors

Venue:
Galpharm Stadium
Date:
Saturday, 14 July
Kick-off:
17:30 BST
Coverage:
Watch live on BBC 2 and BBC HD; listen on BBC Radio Manchester and BBC Radio Leeds; report on BBC Sport website and mobiles

Leeds Rhinos skipper Kevin Sinfield believes containing the Wigan attack will be key to his side's chances in Saturday's Challenge Cup semi-final.

Rhinos will be looking to avenge their 28-18 defeat by the Warriors in last season's final.

"There's an old cliche that defence wins games and we need to play as well without the ball as with it," the 31-year-old told BBC Look North.

"We've done a lot of work on that side of our game in the build-up."

He added: "Wigan pose a different threat with Sam Tomkins and we need to cater for him and look after him but we can't just focus all our efforts on him.

"They're a great team and they've got some fantastic internationals throughout."

As well as losing out to Wigan in last year's showpiece the Rhinos were humbled 50-8 by them at Headingley in June, having lost 20-6 at the DW Stadium on the opening weekend of the Super League season.

Sinfield does not think the recent encounter between the two teams will have a big bearing on Saturday's game.

"They were fantastic that day. I think we caught them on the wrong day and they caught us on the right day," he continued.

"I feel we've improved considerably since then and hopefully we'll prove that on Saturday."

Despite a glittering career at the top of rugby league Sinfield is yet to win a Challenge Cup and the 31-year-old is keen to help his side reach a third successive final and get his hands on the trophy.

"I think people know how desperate I am and how much the whole team want to get back to Wembley," he continued.

"It would mean a great deal to me to win the Challenge Cup. If I don't then they're just the cards I've been dealt but it won't be for the want of trying.

"The memories of the competition I have from being a child are fantastic and I'd love to be able to taste victory for myself."

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