Leeds Rhinos boss Rohan Smith questions crucial drop-goal in Huddersfield defeat, provides James Bentley update

Josh McAllister
Leeds Rhinos coach Rohan Smith Alamy

Leeds Rhinos head coach Rohan Smith

Leeds Rhinos head coach Rohan Smith has questioned the winning drop-goal in the defeat to Huddersfield at the John Smith’s Stadium.

The Rhinos suffered their 13th Super League defeat with a 21-12 scoreline against fellow play-off chasing Giants.

Ian Watson’s side join the Rhinos on 20 points outside the top six on the Super League table, four below sixth-placed Salford Red Devils.

Sam Halsall, Kevin Naiqama and Tui Lolohea crossed in the first half for the hosts, before Luke Hooley and Ash Handley hit back to make it 16-12 at the break.

Returning to the side, Will Pryce kicked two further goals in the second 40 alongside a Jake Connor drop-goal to seal the victory at home.

Following the loss, Smith questioned some of the decisions made by the referee, including Connor’s second half drop goal.

Leeds have won just one in their last five games.

“The ruck was all over the place… it’s a complete lucky dip,” he said.

“There was a huge amount of spirit there [from Leeds] in the second half, including a drop goal didn’t go through.

“The kicker [Connor] and all his mates were laughing that it didn’t go through.

“Everybody said it didn’t go through, except the decision-makers.”

James Bentley update

Meanwhile, the Leeds coach provided a positive update on James Bentley, who was stretchered from the field and taken to the hospital to be assessed after a collision with opposition full-back Connor.

The match was stopped for 10 minutes while the off-contract back-rower was being treated on the pitch.

“He’s OK, he regained consciousness,” Smith confirmed.

“He was in a bad way for a bit. He’s awaiting a scan for his head and neck.

“But there’s signs he will be OK. He was talking to the doctor before he got into the ambulance.”

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