Bradford 0 Leeds 30: Burrow's pace gives Leeds space to tear Bradford apart

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The Independent Online

Leeds took comprehensive revenge for their dramatic late defeat at Headingley earlier in the season as they inflicted a fourth loss in six matches on Bradford under the new coaching regime of Steve McNamara.

The Rhinos emerged the stronger from a tough and tight first half at Odsal and showed the extra skill, typified by their scrum-half, Rob Burrow, to take control in the second.

"We capitulated in the second half," said McNamara after seeing the Bulls fail to score for the first time in almost three years. "We have to take it on the chin, but I don't think 30-0 was a true reflection of the game."

Both sides went close early on, with Leeds denied a try to Lee Smith by a dubious obstruction ruling. At the other end, Rob Burrow's chase and tackle stopped Ben Harris going over.

Bradford, with so much to prove after their dismal display at St Helens in the cup last week, were having at least their fair share of the game territorially, but their kicking, into a strong wind, often let down their approach work.

Quite apart from his try stopping activities, the diminutive Burrow was the most dangerous player on the field, so it was fitting that he should break the stalemate after 34 minutes.

There seemed little danger when he took the pass from Keith Senior, but his blistering acceleration took him past Paul Johnson, Marcus St Hilaire and Karl Pryce on a 40-metre dash for a try which was converted by Kevin Sinfield for a hard earned six point lead at half time.

Their second try three minutes after the break had a strong element of luck about it, Sinfield's kick bouncing off the legs of Bradford defenders to allow Willie Poching to live up to his name by picking up and going over, with Sinfield again adding the goal.

Bradford's chance to get back into the game seemed to have come when Smith lost the ball in a tackle, but the Leeds defence held and Gareth Ellis defused the danger by picking off Stanley Gene's pass. If that summed up Bradford's rough edges then Iestyn Harris's fumble as he ran clear underlined them.

They paid the price when the ever alert Burrow probed down the blind side and created a chance for Chev Walker. Walker, who has announced that he is leaving the Rhinos at the end of the season, showed his finishing ability by driving a low two man tackle to score in the corner.

In the last 10 minutes, Ryan Bailey wrestled his way through four tacklers and Senior rounded it off with a fifth converted try.

Bradford: St Hilaire, Pryce, B Harris, Hape, Vainikolo, I Harris, Deacon, Fielden, Newton, Lynch, Meyers, Johnson, Langley. Substitutes used: Vagana, Gene, James, Henderson.

Leeds: Smith, Donald, Walker, Senior, Williams, McGuire, Burrow, Jones-Buchanan, Diskin, Scruton, Ellis, Poching, Sinfield. Substitutes used: Peacock, Bailey, Millard, Feather.

Referee: S Ganson (St Helens)

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