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Super League preview: Leeds Rhinos v Catalan Dragons
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Catalan Dragons will be aiming for their first-ever Super League victory over Leeds Rhinos at Headingley when the teams go head-to-head on Friday night.
The French club are yet to win on any of their league trips to the champions, although they do have a number of victories over the West Yorkshire side on home soil.
Both teams are guaranteed places in the end-of-season play-off and Leeds remain in with a chance of catching Wigan, while the Dragons are only a point behind fifth-placed St Helens.
Rhinos head coach Brian McDermott welcomes back a trio of experienced players for the visit of the club from Perpignan.
Danny McGuire is in the 19-man squad after recovering from a broken leg while Ryan Bailey and James Jones-Buchanan are also poised to make their returns in the penultimate round of the Super League season.
The Rhinos suffered a disappointing home defeat to Hull KR prior to the Tetley's Challenge Cup final weekend and experienced forward Ian Kirke insists his team-mates are keen to make amends.
"We'll look to get straight back in against Catalan, of course," Kirke told the Yorkshire Evening Post.
"Obviously beating Rovers would have massively benefited in terms of getting third but there's not too much difference between that position and fourth.
"Hopefully if results go our way we can still get to third but if we don't we'll just go do what we can from fourth."
Catalan have lost all eight visits to Headingley, including a 27-20 play-off defeat in 2009.
Head coach Laurent Frayssinous has captain Remi Casty back from injury while fit-again full-back Brent Webb will feature against his former club.
The likes of Louis Anderson, Jason Baitieri, Zeb Taia, Mickael Simon and Daryl Millard will miss the game through injury.
Leeds Rhinos: Hardaker, Jones-Bishop, Watkins, Moon, Hall, McGuire, Burrow, Leuluai, Peacock, Jones-Buchanan, Ablett, Sinfield, Bailey, Kirke, Clarkson, Moore, Singleton, Sutcliffe, Foster.
Catalan Dragons: Webb, Blanch, Pryce, Bosc, Dureau, Elima, Henderson, Casty, Menzies, Mounis, Pelissier, Larroyer, Bousquet, Fakir, Paea, Duport, Vaccari, Whitehead, Garcia.
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First Utility Super League Table
|4||Salford Red Devils||7||7|
|11||Hull K R||6||4|
|First Utility Super League|
|Thursday 26th March|
|20:00||Salford Red Devils vs Widnes Vikings|
|Friday 27th March|
|20:00||Castleford Tigers vs Hull FC|
|20:00||Wigan Warriors vs Wakefield Wildcats|
|20:00||Hull K R vs St Helens|
|20:00||Warrington Wolves vs Huddersfield Giants|
|Saturday 28th March|
|17:00||Catalans Dragons vs Leeds Rhinos|
|Thursday 2nd April|
|20:00||Hull vs Hull K R|
|20:00||Wakefield vs Catalans Dragons|
|20:00||Widnes vs Warrington|
|Friday 3rd April|
|12:45||Castleford vs Leeds|
|First Utility Super League|
|Sunday 22nd March|
|Widnes Vikings 20 - 16 Hull K R|
|Wakefield Wildcats 14 - 44 Huddersfield Giants|
|Friday 20th March|
|Leeds Rhinos 26 - 14 Wigan Warriors|
|Castleford Tigers 30 - 16 Salford Red Devils|
|Hull FC 33 - 22 Catalans Dragons|
|Thursday 19th March|
|St Helens 32 - 24 Warrington Wolves|
|Sunday 15th March|
|Hull K R 50 - 20 Catalans Dragons|
|Salford Red Devils 24 - 18 Wakefield Wildcats|
|Friday 13th March|
|Widnes Vikings 20 - 30 St Helens|
|Wigan Warriors 13 - 12 Hull FC|
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