McDermott praises under-strength side for gritty win over Widnes

Jamie Peacock

With the Leeds Rhinos missing nine first-team players from this match, those that played, including the returning Ben Jones-Bishop all received plaudits from coach Brian McDermott after a gritty 38-28 win over the Widnes Vikings.

With three 18-year olds thrust into the side by McDermott, despite some not so solid defensive performances from his players, he was willing to put that aside and instead praise his relatively young side.

“We had a fair bit to do tonight,” said the coach.

“Ultimately, we came up with the goods.

“It wasn’t the most clinical performance you’ve ever seen and we were a bit leaky defensively but I think you’ve just got to roll with that when you field so many youngsters and people out of position.

“We needed to get the job done, to get the two points, and we did.”

With captain Kevin Sinfield out, it was Jamie Peacock who wore the captain’s armband, with McDermott praising the stand-in captain and other players like Ian Kirke, Liam Sutcliffe and Thomas Minns.

“JP continues to impress but I thought he had a great support cast,” said McDermott.

“Ian Kirke really stepped up Buy Cialis as a starting prop and Brad Singleton deservedly got man of the match.

“The young fellas all stepped up. I thought (debutant) Jordan Baldwinson had an impact off the bench, Liam Sutcliffe continues to impress, and I’m pleased for Thomas Minns that he got more game time.”

The game was evenly poised at one stage, as Widnes lead 22-18 just after half-time, but the eventual result left Widnes coach Dennis Betts disappointed.

“There’s plenty getting away from us at the moment. They keep slipping away,” said Betts.

“We’re pretty good value at the moment and I’d love to be a neutral watching this team, but it’s as frustrating as ever. We’re two inches away from winning.

“It’s individual errors and a lack of focus that is costing us. We are making less mistakes but they are still crucial ones. We’ve got be stronger as a group and keep driving those small margins up.

“The group are working hard for each other but, at the moment, it’s pretty painful and I feel for them.

“We are getting better but the table doesn’t reflect that because we’re losing by a few points.”

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