Leeds Rhinos: Rohan Smith magnanimous in golden point defeat; Blake Austin fails HIA

Drew Darbyshire
Leeds Rhinos coach Rohan Smith Alamy

Leeds Rhinos head coach Rohan Smith

Leeds Rhinos coach Rohan Smith was magnanimous in his post-match press conference as his side went down to a 19-18 golden point defeat to Hull KR.

The Rhinos’ three-match win streak came to an end after Hull KR’s new signing Brad Schneider kicked the match-winning drop goal three minutes in to golden point extra-time.

Hull KR led through Schneider’s seventh minute try before Leeds replied through Jarrod O’Connor.

The Robins then regained the lead thanks to efforts from Tom Opacic and Louis Senior.

Leeds pulled one back before half-time through Corey Johnson before Ash Handley levelled the score in the 55th minute to make it 18-18, with the game then heading in to golden point.

Schneider nailed his second drop goal attempt to cap a dream debut and an impressive result for the Robins.

Speaking after the game, Smith said: “Any golden point loss is hard to take because you know you’ve gone the distance but not got the job done.

“On a difficult night conditions-wise, we let ourselves down with a couple of those tries we conceded in the first half.

“We kept going with our attacking in the second half – when they didn’t score a try – but the game-management stuff before that was probably the stuff before that in normal time.

“I’m not sure who the best team was tonight – I thought we had the better of the play generally but they got the points.

“We competed hard all the way to the end and had the better of the energy battle but just let ourselves down with a bit of execution.”

Rohan Smith gives raps to Hull KR debutant

Smith gave credit to Hull KR match-winner Schneider in his post-match press conference, saying the Germany international stepped up to the plate when it mattered most.

Smith said: “Credit to the young kid (Schneider), he’s only been here for a week but he’s taken two drop-goal attempts and won them the game.

“We had a fair picture about him and he’s a good, solid player who stepped up to the plate when the game was on the line so fair play to him.”

Leeds Rhinos star Blake Austin fails HIA

The Rhinos lost influential half-back Blake Austin in the second half of their defeat to Hull KR due to a failed head injury assessment, meaning Smith’s side had to play the rest of the game with 16 men, and ultimately, one less sub.

Leeds don’t have a game next week due to the Challenge Cup semi-finals taking place. Should Austin pass his return to play concussion protocol, he could be available for their next match against St Helens on Friday, July 28.

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