Article

Depleted Rhinos slump to defeat at Widnes

25 February 2018 18:28

Injury-hit Super League champions Leeds Rhinos suffered a first domestic defeat of the season on Sunday, losing 23-6 at Widnes Vikings.

After beginning their title defence with successive wins, the Rhinos were trounced by NRL premiers Melbourne Storm after travelling to Australia for the World Club Challenge.

Leeds saw Stevie Ward, Jack Walker and Adam Cuthbertson join a lengthy injury list in that contest and a much-changed side was ultimately well beaten on their return to Super League action as the Vikings, for whom Krisnan Inu scored two tries, finished strongly.

Joe Mellor's opening try, created by Wellington Albert, was cancelled out by the Rhinos' replacement hooker Brad Dwyer shortly before the interval, with Kallum Watkins converting to give the visitors a slender lead.

However, a fine kick from Tom Gilmore put Inu over for his first score and the centre added a penalty before Danny Craven's drop goal left Leeds with a mountain to climb.

Danny Walker then burst out of dummy half for a score that assured Widnes of victory and there was still time for Mellor to lay on a second for Inu.

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