Leeds Rhinos v Salford Red Devils: Return of Brad Singleton may herald new positivity

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AFTER an enforced break, prop Brad Singleton hopes to return to action tonight on a positive note and help Leeds Rhinos’ finally end their dire sequence.

He missed last week’s 24-12 defeat against Catalans Dragons after being handed a one-game ban for fighting with Warrington Wolves’ Ashton Sims during their fixture before.

Leeds Rhinos' Brad Singleton.

Leeds Rhinos' Brad Singleton.

Singleton is back this evening but if they lose against Salford Red Devils – for only the second time at Headingley during the summer era – it will be an incredulous eighth successive defeat for the reigning Super League champions.

He was a frustrated figure last Friday but will hope to have a greater impact for the competition’s bottom side this time around.

“It’s not nice watching from the sides, especially when we didn’t get the win like we wanted,” said Singleton, who was disappointed to be banned in the first place. “Sometimes tempers flare and, personally, a prop on a prop….?

“I’d say just leave it be – it is what it is – and thought maybe the sin-bin each was sufficient.

“That didn’t happen but we both got a ban so it was all fair.

“That’s the first time in a while I have been out with a ban, and it is difficult. It’s not a nice thing.”

The 23-year-old said he tries not to look at the table every week as “you would get yourself down” and added: “We just need to look at our opponents and what we can do to beat them.

“Salford have done well this season, they have got quality, and the team spirit looks better.

“They are playing all-for-one, and that’s showing. It will be a tough ask. But we are confident.

“It’s tough times at the minute, but we are all in it together.”

Singleton started in Leeds’ Grand Final win over Wigan last season having also scored in the Challenge Cup final victory against Hull KR a couple of months earlier.

They lost just 14-10 at Salford earlier in the season, opponents who now need another win themselves to keep their top-eight hopes alive.

Ian Watson’s side had six points deducted in April for salary cap breaches, a ruling which undid much of their impressive work this year.

But Singleton, of course, is primarily concerned with Leeds and, though a return to Old Trafford is now unthinkable, there is still plenty to play for.