First Utility Super League: Leeds Rhinos see off Hull FC
Robbie Ward scored a debut try as Leeds responded to their Magic Weekend disappointment with a 20-6 victory over Hull.
Last Updated: 24/05/14 8:45am
The Super League leaders were beaten by a young Wigan side last weekend but had no trouble seeing off a lacklustre Hull outfit.
Joel Moon's scrappy try was the sole effort in a first half to forget at a rain-sodden Headingley Carnegie.
Brad Singleton touched down to give Leeds some breathing space before 18-year-old hooker Ward went over to the delight of the home crowd.
Jamie Shaul crossed in the final minute but it was little more than a consolation for the Airlie Birds as they reflected on a fourth straight defeat.
As well as giving Ward an opportunity, Leeds, who were without talisman Jamie Peacock, welcomed back England internationals Kallum Watkins and Tom Briscoe.
Teenage winger Callum Lancaster made his Black and Whites bow in place of the suspended Jason Crookes and Setaimata Sa also featured for the first time on his comeback from rugby union.
Handling errors were a feature of the opening exchanges as both teams struggled to adapt to the greasy conditions.
Hull went closest to breaking the deadlock in the first quarter when Gareth Ellis, back at Headingley for the first time since he left the club for Australia in 2008, was held up over the line by Briscoe.
Hit the front
The Rhinos had enjoyed the lion's share of possession and they hit the front on 24 minutes, Moon touching down in the corner after the ball had come free from Ryan Hall's grasp as Leeds attacked the short side on the last tackle.
Kevin Sinfield converted from the touchline to give Leeds a 6-0 lead and it was one they held at half-time despite making a number of unforced errors.
Both teams cut down the mistakes and completed their sets early in the second period as the match turned into a real arm wrestle.
Singleton ensured Leeds won the battle by reacting first to a Danny McGuire grubber kick which ricocheted off the post guard.
Sinfield goaled once more to give the Rhinos a 12-point advantage 15 minutes into the half.
The Leeds skipper settled the contest when he slotted over a penalty, moments after he had sent a similar kick wide of the upright.
Ward capped off a dream debut as he pounced on an error from Kirk Yeaman before Shaul touched down to give the travelling Hull supporters something to cheer after receiving a pass from a juggling Fetuli Talanoa.