Rugby League: Harris makes boot do work
Leeds 24 St Helens 16
Sunday 28 February 1999
Leeds scored a try in each half of this scrappy, spoiling tie at Headingley, but Saints effectively lost it by ignoring the insistence of their coach, Ellery Hanley, that discipline was paramount. Despite having the wind and the intermittent rain on their backs, it was not an easy first half for Leeds.
A particularly messy first 15 minutes saw them as the main transgressors, conceding no fewer than eight penalties, three of them close enough to the sticks to be swatted over by Sean Long.
One kick from Harris gave Leeds temporary parity, but they were ragged by comparison with their performance against Wigan in the previous round.
But Leeds learnt their lesson, and gradually the balance of play began to swing in their favour, two more penalties from Harris bringing them level and settling them down sufficiently to play some rugby.
A first try of the match was in prospect when Harris' pass sent Daryl Powell through, but Paul Atcheson's tackle saved the day.
On 33 minutes, they made their breakthrough, Ryan Sheridan starting the move with his pass to Jamie Mathiou and then looping round to take Marc Glanville's long ball, out-flanking the Saints' defence to score.
Harris, immaculate as ever, put over his goal from the touchline and only just failed with a penalty from halfway soon after.
Two minutes before the break Leeds were again within inches of extending their lead, Chris Smith's tackle doing just enough to take Francis Cummins' foot into touch before he could touch down.
Harris did stretch the lead after the break when he was blatantly taken out by Sonny Nickle after kicking through.
Lee Jackson and Nickle both went to the sin bin as the result of separate incidents as the referee, Stuart Cummings, finally lost patience with the amount of messing and mauling that was going on. In between , Paul Sculthorpe thought he had scored for Saints but Tommy Martyn's pass had been clearly forward.
They finally got their try after 49 minutes, Long and Martyn linking well for Vila Matautia to find Kevin Iro, whose pass allowed Paul Newlove to fend off Harris. Long could not land the conversion, but Harris made no mistake with another penalty to add to Leeds' score.
Fittingly, it was yet another penalty that gave them a match-winning lead, Matautia's swinging arm giving Harris a simple seventh goal.
Seven minutes from the end, Sheridan and Tony Farrell sent Terry Newton over, Harris kicked his eighth goal and Leeds, without ever touching the height of a fortnight ago, were safe, Atcheson's injury-time try for Saints making no difference.
Hanley, back on a groud he graced as a player, had no illusions about where it had gone wrong. "We were very indisciplined right across the paddock and that was our downfall," he said. "Leeds cleaned their act up and that was the deciding factor."
Leeds: Harris, Rivett, Blackmore, Godden, Cummins, Powell, Sheridan, Masella, Newton, Fleary, Morley, Farrell, Glanville. Substitutes used: Mathiou, Jackson, Hay, St Hilaire.
St Helens: Atcheson, Smith, Stewart, Newlove, Tuilagi, Martyn, Long, O'Neill, Cunningham, Davidson, Perelini, Nickle, Sculthorpe. Substitutes used: Iro, Adamson, Matautia, Wellens.
Referee: S Cummings (Widnes).
Latest in Sport
Phil Neville and his fellow Match of the Day pundits given warning by the BBC after 'smash them' comment
Manchester United transfer news and rumours: David De Gea could leave for FREE; £38m for Marquinhos; £37m bid for Mats Hummels;
Transfer news LIVE: Manchester United to make £37m Mats Hummels bid; Inter plan Yaya Toure move; Shola Ameobi joins Crystal Palace
Gabriel Paulista: Talented Brazilian could grow into world-class defender at Arsenal
Liverpool transfer news and rumours: Mario Balotelli's agent speaks as Brendan Rodgers swoops for German duo
- 2 Russian girl takes her own life after parents find pornography on her computer
- 4 Ball pool for adults opens in London
- 5 Amal Clooney gives excellent response to fashion question at European Court of Human Rights
9 reasons Greece's experiment with the radical left is doomed to failure
'We would evict Queen from Buckingham Palace and allocate her council house,' say Greens
Have we reached 'peak food'? Shortages loom as global production rates slow
Greece elections: Syriza and EU on collision course after election win for left-wing party
British Muslim school children suffering a backlash of abuse following Paris attacks
British grandmother Lindsay Sandiford faces execution by firing squad in Indonesia
£90 - £140 per day: Tradewind Recruitment: I am currently working in partnersh...
£96000 - £200000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Looking for a better earning p...
£32000 - £36000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A rapidly expanding company in ...
Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: A PA is required to join a leading provider of...