Rhinos ready to play for keeps

 Leeds Rhinos are not here for a holiday, make no mistake – they are here to win.

Having completed the near-17,000 kilometre journey to Melbourne on Saturday, the English Super League Champions are now preparing to return home with the crown of the world’s best rugby league team.

While the weather may be a mere 7 degrees back home at the moment, Melbourne is not entirely foreign to Leeds’ stars.

The likes of star winger Ryan Hall and captain Kallum Watkins visited the city as recently as late November as part of the English side playing in the Rugby League World Cup.

That does remove an element of the unknown heading into Friday night’s marquee event.

“I have been here a couple of times, it is a lovely city and obviously a pleasure to be here,” Watkins said.

“We are just looking forward to the game on Friday. It is a big challenge for our boys and we are certainly looking forward to it.”

Leeds are already two games into their 2018 season, having defeated Warrington Wolves and Hull KR to make a successful start to their title defence.

While the performances have not been overly impressive by their own admission, there is certainly plenty of optimism amongst the visitors.

“Our first two games we got two wins so that gives us confidence going into this game,” Watkins said.

“It is an opportunity to become world champions so we’ve got to make the most of it.

“We just need to focus on what we do. (Storm) are a big side and an excellent side as well so we will try to prepare for the best of them.”

Leeds Rhinos Coach Brian McDermott speaks to the media on Monday afternoon.
Leeds Rhinos Coach Brian McDermott speaks to the media on Monday afternoon.

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