Leeds v Wakefield: Good time to face the Rhinos, admits Scruton

Nick Scruton.
Nick Scruton.
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HE is one of their own but Wakefield Trinity Wildcats’ Nick Scruton hopes to heap yet more misery on treble-winners Leeds Rhinos today.

The experienced prop helped his current team to a much-needed 36-22 victory against Huddersfield Giants on Good Friday to lift them off bottom place.

Struggling Rhinos, though, have slipped into the bottom four themselves, having won just twice this season.

Leeds-born Scruton, who won the 2008 Grand Final with Rhinos, now hopes to help Wakefield inflict another defeat on them.

“Now we’ve got that win it is a big opportunity for us to climb,” he said. “Leeds are struggling for confidence, they have lost five games already, so we know if we start well and complete high we are going to have a big chance.”

Asked if this is a good time to play their illustrious rivals, the former Bradford Bulls front-row said: “If ever there is a good time to play Leeds, then ‘yes’, why not?

“It would have been nice to have them at home as we would have been really confident then.

“Headingley is always a tough place to go and come away with the points, but we are confident.

“It doesn’t take much to get confidence running through the side. We’ve got a few bodies back now – Scott Moore coming back is a big lift for us and Kirmo (Danny Kirmond) coming back is a massive lift. They both played brilliantly on Friday, so we’re looking forward to it.”

Leeds’s latest defeat was an 18-14 loss at Castleford Tigers last Thursday which, Scruton says, will leave them “seething”.

Wakefield make three changes to their 19-man squad with forward Tinirau Arona returning from a two-game ban and Jason Walton plus former Leeds prop Andy Yates also recalled.

They replace Anthony Tupou, who picked up an injury against Huddersfield, and Ashley Gibson and Stuart Howarth who both suffered head knocks in that impressive win.

There is still no sign of Leeds captain Danny McGuire returning from knee and calf injuries.

Brett Delaney, who strained a hamstring during the warm-up at Castleford, and Ryan Hall remain out and Leeds have lost England second-row Carl Ablett from the side that lost at Wheldon Road.