Hull KR will be looking add to Leeds’ recent misery by inflicting a third straight Super League defeat on them when they meet on Sunday afternoon.
The Rhinos return to Hull just 10 days after their last visit, when a late Marc Sneyd drop goal saw them fall to a 19-18 loss.
The Robins got back to winning ways last weekend as they comfortably beat League 1 side Oldham 32-0 in the fifth round of the Challenge Cup. Fullback Adam Quinlan recorded a hat-trick, while Junior Vaivai impressed again in his second appearance for the club.
In Super League, though, Tim Sheens’ side are struggling and have lost 4 of their last 5 games. Heavy defeats to St. Helens and Wigan either side of a 30-22 defeat in the derby and then going down to in-form Warrington leave them in 10th position. Their only win in that run came against Widnes three weeks ago.
However, KR did show a fighting spirit in their most recent league match at the Halliwell Jones, fighting back from 22-2 down at the break to get back within 2-points of Warrington shortly after the restart but it wasn’t enough as they were eventually beaten 40-26.
Champions Leeds are also in poor form going into Sunday’s fixture with a record of just 2 wins in 6, losing their last 2.
Having lost to a drop-goal against Wigan a week earlier, it was a similar story at Hull FC’s KCOM Stadium last Thursday. This time, it was Leeds who had clawed their way back into the game after a poor start, and they found themselves in front when Matt Parcell was awarded a penalty try midway through the second half.
But, they again failed to hold onto their lead under pressure from the Black and Whites, with a try from Carlos Tuimavave and then a well-executed drop goal from Sneyd earning the home side the two competition points.
Leeds got the better of Hull KR in round 2 as they beat them 20-11 at Elland Road. Jimmy Keinhorst, who has since left the club and joined Widnes on loan, scored a hat-trick to secure a hard-fought win against a spirited Rovers side.
The Rhinos have a good record at KCOM Craven Park, winning each of their last 5 visits. In fact, in the time between Hull KR’s first year back in the top flight in 2007 and their relegation in 2016, Leeds came away victorious in all but three of their 11 away fixtures vs the Robins.
Rovers make 4 changes to the squad that secured progress in the Challenge Cup with the ex-Leeds trio of Danny McGuire, Chris Clarkson and Robbie Mulhern coming back in, along with winger Justin Carney.
Matty Marsh, Josh Johnson, Will Oakes and Will Dagger are the players to make way.
Andrew Heffernan is still out due to a serious concussion, as is captain Shaun Lunt who suffered knee ligament damage at Warrington, an injury that will keep him out for several weeks. Lee Jewitt (groin) and George Lawler (leg/ankle) are other notable absentees.
Brad Singleton returns for Leeds after he missed out last week due to an ankle injury but is fit enough to retake his place in the squad. Stevie Ward, who was forced off against Hull FC also with an ankle issue, did not suffer any lasting damage and will feature on Sunday.
Nathaniel Peteru, who has not played since round 1 due to a torn bicep and had targeted to make his comeback in this game, is fit but is likely to play for Featherstone in their tie with Batley on dual-registration as he regains match fitness.
Liam Sutcliffe (foot), Brad Dwyer (elbow), Mitch Garbutt (knee) and Jack Walker (ankle) are all unavailable.
The 19-man squads in full are-
Hull KR: Adam Quinlan, Junior Vaivai, Ryan Shaw, Danny McGuire, Nick Scruton, Mose Masoe, Maurice Blair, James Greenwood, Ben Kavanagh, James Donaldson, Chirs Clarkson, Tommy Lee, Robbie Mulhern, Liam Salter, Chris Atkin, Jordan Walne, Joe Cator, Danny Tickle, Justin Carney.
Leeds Rhinos: Ashton Golding, Tom Briscoe, Kallum Watkins, Ryan Hall, Joel Moon, Richie Myler, Adam Cuthbertson, Matt Parcell, Brad Singleton, Jamie Jones-Buchanan, Carl Ablett, Stevie Ward, Brett Delaney, Anthony Mullally, Brett Ferres, Ash Handley, Cameron Smith, Mikolaj Oledzki, Josh Walters.
Date: Sunday 29th April 2018.
Venue: KCOM Craven Park, Hull.
Referee: Scott Mikalauskas.