Following last week’s 28-20 victory away to St Helens, Leeds’ two points looked as though they came at a cost. In the early stages of the match, full back Ashton Golding exited the stage after a head injury and failed the associated test while Kallum Watkins went off with a similar problem in the second half. Coach Brian McDermott admitted in his post match press conference that it was unlikely that either player would be fit and ready to return for this Friday’s derby against Castleford.
However, it has today been confirmed that both players have been passed fit and it is believed both will feature in the match being dubbed ‘The Clash’ at Elland Road. The clubs are hoping to set a new record Super League regular season attendance, currently just over 25,000 and a string of players have been talking on social media of their excitement at the occassion, Golding himself included. As a Leeds United fan, the 21 year old said “I’ve never had the opportunity to play here [at Elland Road] so I’m really looking forward to it.”
The Rhinos will be glad to have two of their key players available for such a big match and McDermott is confident in his team. Despite injuries that still plague the squad, he has spoken glowingly about the blossoming of the new half back pairing at his disposal in the shape of Richie Myler and Joel Moon. “The more they play together, the better we’ll be,” he suggested. “Richie is an absolute general now on the field – that’s what our team needs, someone telling them what to do,” he further divulged. Focusing on Moon’s role in the team, the four-time Super League winning coach articulated that “he has more of a running influence and plays off the cuff,” – something which led to Ash Handley’s second try last weekend against the Saints.