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Super League Round 2: Widnes vs Leeds Preview

Widnes Vikings entertain Leeds Rhinos at the Select Security Stadium on Sunday, looking for a second win of the new campaign.

It will be a tough ask to make it two wins from two this weekend though, as Denis Betts’ men go up against a formidable treble-winning outfit.

In the sixteen Super League meetings between these two sides, Leeds have dominated their opponents, earning twelve wins. It was the home side who won the last outing between the two clubs though, taking the spoils 38-24 in the corresponding fixture last season.

But Leeds’ dominance over Widnes is shown through the scorelines of some of their bigger wins; their highest score against the Vikings came in a 68-24 demolition, back in 2012, Widnes’ first season back in the top flight. Their highest margin of victory came in Widnes’ previous spell in the Super League, back in 2005, when the Rhinos defeated Widnes 66-8.

But forget all those damaging losses – this is a better Widnes side than in 2012 and 2005. They dominated throughout against Wakefield last week, and will look to do so again on Sunday.

It will be a tough ask, especially as Leeds centre Kallum Watkins has scored in each of his last five meetings with the Widnes, recording an impressive six tries in that time.

Rhinos’ full-back Zak Hardaker will also be looking to prove his worth once more – he is one effort away from a career century of tries in both domestic and international competitions.

But Denis Betts’ men also have some key players too – centre Chris Dean is set to make his 150th career appearance on Sunday, while prop Setaimata Sa will be looking to add to the brace he tallied at Belle Vue last weekend.

Widnes Vikings 19-man squad

Chris Bridge, Kevin Brown, Hep Cahill, Chris Dean, Gil Dudson, Connor Farrell, Rhys Hanbury, Aaron Heremaia, Chris Houston, Macgraff Leuluia, Manase Manuokafoa, Stefan Marsh, Joe Mellor, Eamon O’Carroll, Charly Runciman, Setaimata Sa, Corey Thompson, Lloyd White, Matt Whitley.

Leeds Rhinos 19-man squad

Zak Hardaker, Tom Briscoe, Kallum Watkins, Joel Moon, Ryan Hall, Rob Burrow, Keith Galloway, Adam Cuthbertson, Carl Ablett, Liam Sutcliffe, Brett Delaney, Brad Singleton, Mitch Garbutt, Jimmy Keinhorst, Josh Walters, Ash Handley, Ashton Golding, Jordan Lilley, Brett Ferres

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