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Bradford 14-30 Leeds

Bradford (8) 14
Tries: Solomona, Halley, Tupou Goals: Sykes

Leeds (12) 30
Tries: McGuire, Burrow, Lauitiiti, Webb, Senior Goals: Sinfield (5)


Bradford v Leeds

Kevin Sinfield scored in a record 49th successive Super League game as Leeds secured an eight-point lead at the top of the table by beating Bradford.

The Rhinos were made to work hard for the win after David Solomona and Dave Halley put the Bulls 8-0 up early on.

Danny McGuire and Rob Burrow tries brought Leeds back into it with Sinfield converting both, before Tame Tupou gave Bradford the lead again.

But scores by Ali Lauitiiti, Brent Webb and Keith Senior sealed the victory.

Sinfield converted all five Rhinos tries to surpass Wigan's Andy Farrell's 1999 record of scoring in 48 successive rounds.

The Bulls were hit by the late withdrawal of half-backs Paul Deacon and Iestyn Harris with pulled hamstrings and had winger Semi Tadulala taken to hospital with a dislocated shoulder.

But they created much of the early pressure with Solomona taking Terry Newton's flat pass to crash over after 14 minutes for the first try, despite the attention of three defenders.

Halley went close to intercepting Webb's pass with the line at his mercy but shortly afterwards he seized on a Ben Jeffries kick to score his seventh try of the season.

Paul Sykes, who was taking the kicks in the absence of Deacon and Harris, missed both conversion attempts.

606: DEBATE
BWIS
McGuire gave the Rhinos hope with a diagonal run to the corner and he stretched out of a tackle from Jeffries to plant the ball over the line and then, three minutes before the break, Senior took Sinfield's pass to go through a gap and send Burrow over for a try.

The Bulls regained the lead on 54 minutes when replacement winger Tupou took Newton's pass to score his first try of the season.

That levelled the scores and Sykes succeeded with his most difficult kick of the night to make it 14-12. Tupou thought he had scored again in similar fashion five minutes later after taking Solomona's pass 10 metres out but his effort was disallowed after his elbow hit the touchline.

But Leeds stepped up a gear with two tries in three minutes from Lauitiiti and Webb before Senior went over late on to wrap up the scoring.


Bradford coach Steve McNamara

"I thought the effort was superb. We tried really really hard. Obviously we had difficult preparation and I thought that showed in some of the things we did.

"We lost both Deacon and Harris in the last five minutes of practice on Thursday so we had to roll things around overnight and try to find a different way to play.

"We felt we could win with the team we had out and we're disappointed we haven't won. We kept trying to the end but Leeds came up with some killer plays. The game was a lot closer than the scoreline suggests."

Leeds coach Brian McClennan

"We're pleased to get the win and consolidate our position at the top of the table. We can now look forward to playing Wigan in the cup.

"Bradford made us work. They're a top club and they stuck to their tactics but we got up in the end.

"I don't think there is a full-back in the world who supports as well as Brent Webb does. He creates a lot of opportunities and it's not through luck, it's through hard work."


Bradford: Platt, Halley, Sykes, Hape, Tadulala, Morrison, Jeffries, Vagana, Newton, Lynch, Solomona, Langley, Burgess.
Replacements: Kopczak, Finnigan, Karlile, Tupou.

Leeds: Webb, Hall, Ellis, Senior, Donald, McGuire, Burrow, Leuluai, Diskin, Scruton, Ablett, Peacock, Sinfield.
Replacements: Burgess, Bailey, Lauitiiti, Tansey. Referee: P Bentham (Warrington)

see also
Bradford hit by Nero injury blow
19 May 08 |  Bradford
Castleford 24-46 Bradford
18 May 08 |  Rugby League
Leeds 58-12 Wakefield
16 May 08 |  Rugby League


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