Super League talking points: Leeds Rhinos send SOS, Hull KR eye record, St Helens selection within spirit of game?

There was no place like home in round 10 of Super League as teams rounded off a gruelling Easter period.

Zak Hardaker appears to be on his way back to Leeds Rhinos. (Picture: SWPix.com)
Zak Hardaker appears to be on his way back to Leeds Rhinos. (Picture: SWPix.com)

Hull FC's win over Catalans Dragons on Sunday evening completed a clean sweep for home sides, with Leeds Rhinos, Castleford Tigers and Hull KR also victorious.

Here, The Yorkshire Post takes a look at the talking points across the county after the latest round of fixtures.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

Rhinos send SOS

Zak Hardaker during his time at Leeds Rhinos. (Picture: SWPix.com)

The rumour mill has been in overdrive since Zak Hardaker left Wigan Warriors at the end of last week.

Huddersfield Giants and Castleford quickly ruled themselves out of the running but Jamie Jones-Buchanan did not shoot down talk of a Headingley return, instead expressing his desire to bring the England international back to the Rhinos.

Leeds Live has since reported that Hardaker is on the verge of signing a deal until the end of the season, a timely addition to a squad at breaking point.

It would represent a gamble given Hardaker's history but the Rhinos need inspiration from somewhere and the 30-year-old could be the man to provide it.

St Helens played a young side at Castleford. (Picture: SWPix.com)

Saints selection within spirit of game?

On the day Tony Smith told Hull KR he planned to leave and his nephew Rohan was unveiled as the new Leeds head coach, St Helens' squad selection for the trip to Castleford went under the radar.

Kristian Woolf rested virtually his entire first-choice 17 - Joey Lussick the one exception - and handed debuts to seven youngsters on the night.

Saints earned the right to make 12 changes after winning eight of their opening nine games and player welfare was at the forefront of Woolf's mind going into a third match in the space of a week.

Hull KR celebrate the win over Wakefield. (Picture: SWPix.com)

The champions did not break any rules but fans have questioned whether it was within the spirit of the game, with Castleford claiming two points that may prove crucial in the race for the play-offs.

Hull KR eye Super League record

The Robins are well placed for another crack at Old Trafford after making light work of Wakefield Trinity to claim a fourth straight Super League victory.

Thanks to their progress in the Challenge Cup, Rovers have won six games on the bounce as a Super League side for the first time since 2009.

Chris Hill after Huddersfield's defeat at Warrington. (Picture: SWPix.com)

A victory over Leeds at Headingley on Friday night would set a new club record for consecutive victories in the Super League era.

KR are not the finished article - as Smith is at pains to stress - but they are a dangerous team with momentum behind them.

Giants lose way

That could be bad news for Huddersfield as they prepare for a Challenge Cup semi-final date with the Robins at Elland Road next week.

Whereas Smith's men have found a winning formula, the Giants have lost their way since booking a last-four spot.

Third in the table heading into the Easter period, Huddersfield are down to sixth after picking up a solitary point across their three fixtures.

Chris Satae celebrates his try against Catalans.

The Giants will be desperate to arrest the slide at Wakefield on Thursday night, an important game as they look to play their way back into form ahead of the semi-final.

Contenders or pretenders?

On the whole, it was a slow start to the season for the Yorkshire clubs with Hull KR, Wakefield, Leeds and Castleford all failing to fire in the opening month, and beyond in some cases.

St Helens, Wigan and Catalans are leading the way in Super League but the gap is closing.

Brett Hodgson's Hull appear to have learned from their 2021 struggles, Rovers continue to grow in stature and Castleford are making strides under Lee Radford.

All three sides are still some way off threatening Saints' stranglehold on the Super League trophy but they are at least giving the top three something to think about.