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Last Updated: Saturday, 26 April, 2003, 23:09 GMT 00:09 UK
Sinfield gets Paul backing
By Phil Gordos in Cardiff

Robbie Paul
Robbie Paul says he would have kicked for goal
Bradford captain Robbie Paul is tipping opposite number Kevin Sinfield to bounce back from Saturday's Powergen Challenge Cup final defeat.

The Leeds star came under fire for turning down the chance to kick at goal when his side trailed by just two points with five minutes to go.

A successful penalty would have tied the scores at 22-22 and at least earned the Rhinos a second bite of the cherry in a replay next month.

But Sinfield chose to run the ball and saw his team come up short when Bradford's defence held firm under severe pressure.

"I can understand what Kevin did but I would have taken the shot at goal," said Paul, who scored his side's first try at the Millennium Stadium.

"Kevin's a great player and a sensible fellow. He won't let this affect him too much.

"There is going to be a lot more finals for him in his career. He will learn just as I did."

Paul has been on the losing side in three Challenge Cup finals, getting beat in 1996, 1997 and 2001.

"In 1996, I was 20 when I captained Bradford at Wembley and I learned from that experience," said the Kiwi.

"I also learned a lot the following year, when we lost again.

"I finally won a Challenge Cup final at the third attempt, although we lost again 12 months later.

"Now I've played in five cup finals and won two, so I'm hoping to even things up in 2004."




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