New coach Dave Furner’s first competitive game in charge of Leeds Rhinos ended in a comprehensive 26-6 defeat at Warrington Wolves last night.
The visitors - with four players making their debut - conceded eight points when Warrington were down to 12 men in the first half and trailed by 20 at the break, though the second half scoring was shared.
The home team were faster and dominant physically and Leeds dropped off too many tackles after a relatively positive start, though Ash Handley and Liam Sutcliffe both gave a good account of themselves.
Rhinos full-back Jack Walker had a touchdown ruled out for a knock-on and Warrington’s star signing Blake Austin spilled Bryson Goodwin’s pass with the line begging in the opening stages, but Leeds were denied a try on 12 minutes by home forward Jack Hughes.
Adam Cuthbertson, Richie Myler and Walker worked the ball to Hurrell who sent his winger Handley racing away.
He returned the pass and Hurrell would have scored, but was tackled off the ball by Hughes who was yellow-carded.
Warrington went ahead when down to 12 men, Stefan Ratchford stepping through for a 15th minute try which he also converted.
The full-back added two more points through a penalty goal before Hughes returned and Warrington went 14-0 ahead after 28.
Hurrell knocked on and then Tom Briscoe fumbled a kick into touch when Warrington’s attack seemed to have broken down and off the scrum Ryan Atkins sent Josh Charnley over, Ratchford converting from the touchline.
Things got even worse three minutes later when Daryl Clark burst past Matt Parcell and Walker and Ratchford added his fourth goal to make it 20-0.
Walker was held up over the Warrington line late in the first half and there was no more scoring until the 58th minute when Austin crossed for his first Super League try and Ratchford converted to make the points safe.
Warrington were back down to 12 on 73 minutes when Tony King was sin-binned for a dangerous tackle on Stevie Ward.
Rhinos looked to be heading for only their third nilling of the summer era, but Ward forced his way over three minutes from time and Tui Lolohea added the extras to complete the scoring.
Handley went close to grabbing Leeds’ second try 90 minutes from time, but was tackled into touch by Charnley.