NEW SIGNING Richie Myler is confident of no ill-effects after his first Leeds Rhinos appearance was cut short.
The former Widnes, Salford, Warrington and Catalans scrum-half suffered a bang to the head in the first half of Rhinos’ 17-10 Boxing Day win at Wakefield Trinity and did not return after the break.
But he said he felt fine after the game and was cautiously happy with his contribution before the injury, though he admitted the Christmas fixture is no indication of how things will go when Betfred Super League begins at HJ Stadium on February 1.
“I am all right, I’ve just got a bit of a buzz in my head!” Myler said after the match. “I was pleased to get out there and get my first game out of the way.”
Myler provided the final pass for Leeds’ first try, scored by stand-in captain Brad Singleton and also tagged on the conversion.
“It was all right,” he said of the champions’ pre-season opener. “It was a good hit-out, but there was no intensity from both sides really. That played a factor, but a win’s a win. We defended well, though we leaked a couple of tries and some of the young boys got a good run-out. I am sure they enjoyed it and they’ll be better for the experience.”
Myler, who has inherited the No 7 jersey from club legend and new head of academy coaching Rob Burrow, was one of the first batch of players to begin training early last month.
The 27-year-old felt Rhinos could be happy with the way they defended – restricting Wakefield to just two tries – and the impact made by their forwards, with Singleton, Jack Ormondroyd and Mikolaj Oledzki all touching down.
“It’s hard to take much from that game,” admitted the former England man.
“But we have been working hard in training and it was good to get back out on the field.
“We are looking forward to the year, but we are a long way off playing [a competitive game] just yet, so it’s back to pre-season now.”
Of his first few weeks as a Leeds player, Myler added: “It has been good, I have really enjoyed it. The boys have been very welcoming and I am happy to be here. I can’t wait to get started.”
Rhinos will send a team to play Coventry Bears on Friday, January 19 and then have games at Castleford Tigers two days later and away to Featherstone Rovers on January 26 before their title defence begin at Warrington in five weeks’ time.
Leeds’ England players and their overseas contingent will report back in the new year and Myler expects the intensity to increase then.
“We’ve not got everybody in yet,” he said.
“It will start ramping up a bit more in training now and going into the next few friendlies. We are still building, but it [Boxing Day] was a good hit-out.”
Myler reckons Rhinos need to hit the ground running, with a World Club Challenge at Melbourne Storm looming in their third competitive game: “We can’t afford to be too slow at the start, we need to get our timing right.”