Catalans 32-18 Leeds: Dragons secure fourth spot and home play-off

Mitchell Pearce Catalans Man of Steel

Catalans Dragons secured fourth spot in the Super League table and ensured a home play-off tie following a 32-18 victory over Leeds at Stade Brutus.

Rohan Smith’s Rhinos remain sixth and will have all to play for in the ultimate round of the regular season as they host seventh-placed Castleford. 

It also ended Leeds’ six-game winning streak. It’s a third consecutive top four finish for Catalans.

Match report

Mitchell Pearce returned for the hosts and was named in the halves alongside Tyrone May. Arthur Mourgue was named at full-back, replacing Sam Tomkins.

Winger Ash Handley remained in Leeds with his partner as the couple await the birth of their first child. Zak Hardaker moved to full-back, with Jack Sinfield named to partner Richie Myler in the halves. 

Catalans made some early pressure count on three minutes. France international Fouad Yaha crossing for his 19th try of the season. Arthur Mourgue couldn’t convert, but later slotted a penalty goal for a 6-0 lead. 

Leeds hit back on 14 minutes through Sam Walters to level the score.

However, the Dragons regained their lead nine minutes later through Joe Chan, with the video referee awarding the four-pointer.

The returning Pearce soon extended that lead with a right foot step to crash his way over. 

Record-breaker Yaha scored his second of the evening and his 100th Super League try on 30 minutes to give his side a comfortable 22-6 lead. 

Warrington-bound Gil Dudson made it back-to-back Super League tries just three minutes later. The Wales international powering over under the sticks to extend the lead in a dominate first half for the hosts.

HT: Catalans 28-6 Leeds

Richie Myler, who scored a hat-trick during Leeds’ last visit to Perpignan, opened the second half scoring on 42 minutes against his former club to give the Rhinos some hope. 

Leeds held strong in defence in the second half and were rewarded on 66 minutes through hooker Brad Dwyer who crashed his way over for a tense finish in the south of France. 

However, unlike their last meeting, the hosts held strong and sealed the victory on 76 minutes through Samisoni Langi.

FT: Catalans 32-18 Leeds

Catalans: Mourgue, Davies, Langi, Whare, Yaha, Pearce, May, Seguier, McIlorum, Napa, Whitley, J.Chan, Garcia. Bench: Dudson, Da Costa, Goudemand, Kasiano.

Tries: Yaha (2), Chan, Pearce, Langi

Goals: Mourgue 3/6

Leeds: Hardaker, Tindall, Sutcliffe, Martin, Briscoe, Myler, Sinfield, Oledzki, Leeming, Walters, Gannon, Tetevano, O’Connor. Bench: Prior, Bentley, Dwyer, Mustapha. 

Tries: Waltere, Myler, Dwyer

Goals: Martin 3/3

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About Josh McAllister 1909 Articles
Journalist. Joined the Love Rugby League team full time at the start of 2022 having been a freelance reporter for several years. Previously media manager for Swinton and Rochdale.

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