Kevin Sinfield takes charge of his first Leeds Rhinos game as director of rugby this afternoon as the struggling champions head to Castleford Tigers.
The Rhinos beat the Tigers in the Grand Final last year but this season they may well have to battle it out in The Qualifiers to avoid relegation.
I’m not sure their injury-ravaged squad will be able to claim a win at Cas this afternoon but they should be able to keep it respectable and a +7 handicap looks a solid call in this one.
The Tigers demolished Leeds 38-10 at Magic Weekend in May and the Rhinos have lost their last seven Super League games but they’ve only been hammered twice in that run, including the loss to Cas in Newcastle, and will be keen to put on a performance for Sinfield in his first game in charge.
The Rhinos may be on an horrendous run but in their recent defeats to Wigan and St Helens they have scored first in both games and can strike first against Cas too.
Sinfield will get the players fired up and I’m expecting a close game even if the Tigers do ultimately prove too strong, and Leeds can make a strong start with the first points of the match.
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