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The BBC's Dave Woods
"A real thrilling finish"
 real 28k

Sunday, 26 March, 2000, 15:41 GMT 16:41 UK
Rhinos edge out Daylight

Frances Cummins' try was crucial for Leeds
Hull 22-28 Leeds

Leeds booked their place in the Challenge Cup final despite a semi-final hat-trick for Hull winger Matt Daylight.

The Rhinos will meet West Yorkshire rivals Bradford in next month's showpiece event at Murrayfield in Edinburgh.

But the holders will be relieved after Hull pushed them all the way in the second semi-final of the weekend.

Man of the match was Daylight, who again demonstrated the exceptional finishing that earned him 25 Super League tries for Gateshead last year.

Ritchie Blackmore, Ryan Sheridan, Frances Cummins and Anthony Farrell shared the tries for the Rhinos, with Iestyn Harris kicking each conversion plus two penalties.



I had hoped that I would never ever see this on a rugby league pitch. Make no mistake, we will deal with this with all the authority and power at our disposal

Sir Rodney Walker
The match was marred after the final whistle when a number of Hull supporters invaded the pitch and pulled down one set of goalposts.

Rugby Football League chairman Sir Rodney Walker promised the "sternest" action would be taken after police horses and dogs had to drive unruly supporters from the pitch.

Leeds fans remained in their sections of the ground despite some Hull goading them from the pitch.

Early points

Hull took a 90-second lead with a Ben Sammut penalty after Farrell had been pulled up for throwing a punch.



Leeds marched on to the final
But five minutes in, Blackmore made light of Deon Bird's challenge to cross for the game's first try, which Harris converted before adding a penalty on 18 minutes.

Then came the first of Daylight's tries when David Barnhill had the ball stolen in a one-on-one tackle by Craig Wilson.

The ball was fed speedily out for the former Gateshead winger to squeeze over at the corner.

Leeds grabbed a second try on 24 minutes when Cummins took a suspiciously forward pass from Barrie McDermott and set up for Sheridan to cross from close range.

Harris kicked his third goal but Hull reduced the deficit when scrum-half Paul Cook helped Wilson work the ball wide for Daylight to run over.

Neither of Hull's first half scores were converted, leaving Harris' successes with the boot to make all the difference to the 14-10 scoreline at the break.

Daylight levels

The scores were levelled after the break as Daylight scored his hat-trick when he superbly took a high kick from Cooke into the corner and charged over.


daylight
Daylight shone in Huddersfield
The video referee was consulted to make sure there was no offside, and the try was allowed, although Sammut's conversion attempt failed.

But six minutes later Leeds restored their lead with Cummins superbly taking Sheridan's bomb and diving over.

The reliable Harris again converted, and then extended the lead to 22-14 with a penalty on 63 minutes.

With 10 minutes remaining Sammut was handed a chance to get back to within a converted try of Leeds.

His penalty from 30 metres out on the left just sneaked inside the posts to set up a nail-biting finale for Leeds.

But from the restart Paul Broadbent was adjudged to have knocked on in his own in-goal area, ruining Hull's chance to immediately exert late pressure.

Worse still for Hull, Farrell was allowed to burst through under the posts for the match-winning try which was converted by the faultless Harris.

The Rhinos needed the insurance of what was now a 12-point lead with a late converted try from Wayne McDonald reducing the deficit.

Teams:

Hull: Sammut, Daylight, Bird, Collins, Carney, Cooke, Robinson, Broadbent, King, Felsch, Wilson, Grimaldi, Maiden. Replacements: Simon, Gene, McDonald, Hick.

Leeds: Harris, Rivett, Blackmore, Senior, Cummins, Powell, Sheridan, Fleary, Speak, McDermott, Barnhill, Farrell, Sinfield. Replacements: St Hilaire, Jackson, Hay, Mathiou.

Referee: Stuart Cummings (Widnes)

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See also:

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Links to other Rugby League stories are at the foot of the page.