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Super League: Bradford Bulls v Leeds Rhinos preview
To have seen first-hand what they are going through and the experiences they are having as a group was a real eye opener for me and that will stand me in good stead for the future.
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Bradford will be looking to clinch their first Super League win over Leeds since April 2012 - and finally move out of negative numbers in the process - when they host the Rhinos on Thursday.
The Bulls - who this week announced an appeal against the six-point penalty imposed on them for going into administration - have not managed a league win since seeing off the London Broncos in round three at the start of March.
In contrast, their opponents arrive at the Provident Stadium having only lost once in 2014 and fresh off back-to-back landslide victories over Wakefield.
However form can count for little when it comes to derby matches - the Bulls claimed a share of the spoils in the Easter fixture in round nine last year, securing an 18-18 draw at Headingley thanks to a late try from Adam Sidlow.
The former Salford forward returned from injury against his old club last Friday, though he was unable to prevent Bradford from slipping to a 38-24 loss to the Red Devils that kept them stuck to the foot of the table.
Coach Francis Cummins is able to call upon Danny Bridge and Tom Olbison this time around, with the former this week having extending his loan deal from Warrington until the end of the season.
Fellow loanee Anthony Mullally, however, has returned to Huddersfield ahead of a busy Easter period that will see all clubs play twice in quick succession.
Leeds' Liam Sutcliffe also enjoyed a temporary spell with Bradford earlier this year but this time around the half-back could be in the away dressing room, having been included in coach Brian McDermott's 19-man squad.
"It was a good experience to play over there and get a full game under my belt," Sutcliffe told Leeds' official website.
"To have seen first-hand what they are going through and the experiences they are having as a group was a real eye opener for me and that will stand me in good stead for the future.
"While I was there, the club had no owner but the coaches and players did not worry about that, they just got on with their jobs, and concentrated on the playing side of things."
One former Bull who certainly won't feature on his old stomping ground is Jamie Peacock - the forward, fresh from making his 500th competitive appearance against the Wildcats last Friday, has been rested ahead of the home match with Salford on Easter Monday.
This week it will be Rob Burrow's turn to reach a personal milestone; the long-time Rhino will bring up 400 games for the club, something only 12 players have managed to achieve in Leeds' colours.
McDermott is able to recall full-back Zak Hardaker in place of the injured Ben Jones-Bishop, who has joined Jamie Jones-Buchanan and Paul Aiton in the treatment room after suffering a head injury against the Wildcats.
Bradford: Donaldson, Henry, Olbison, Purtell, Gale, Kear, Fakir, Walker, Sidlow, Ferguson, Foster, Blythe, Diskin, Manuokafoa, Addy, Gaskell, Bridge, Kearney, O'Brien.
Leeds: Hardaker, Watkins, Moon, Hall, McGuire, Burrow, Leuluai, Ablett, Sinfield, Ward, Delaney, Bailey, Kirke, Clarkson, Achurch, Briscoe, Sutcliffe, Singleton, Minchella.
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First Utility Super League Table
|5||Hull K R||0||0|
|7||Salford Red Devils||0||0|
|First Utility Super League|
|Thursday 5th February|
|20:00||Widnes vs Wigan|
|Friday 6th February|
|20:00||St Helens vs Catalans Dragons|
|Saturday 7th February|
|15:00||Warrington vs Salford|
|Sunday 8th February|
|15:00||Huddersfield vs Hull|
|15:00||Hull K R vs Leeds|
|15:30||Castleford vs Wakefield|
|Thursday 12th February|
|20:00||Salford vs St Helens|
|Friday 13th February|
|20:00||Hull vs Warrington|
|20:00||Leeds vs Widnes|
|20:00||Wigan vs Huddersfield|
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