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Saturday, 19 January, 2019

Hull KR can seize chance to rattle Leeds Rhinos

Toulouse are strong at home

Ryan Shaw of Hull KR lines up a conversion
1 of 1

Leeds v Hull KR
Sky Sports Arena, 3.15pm Saturday
Toronto v London
Sky Sports Arena, 5.30pm Saturday

For the second time in three seasons, Leeds look set to win their scrap for survival in the Qualifiers and earn a return to the Betfred Super League, but there may be a bump in the road for the Rhinos against Hull KR.

Leeds are 4-11 to follow up their victories over Championship pair Toulouse and London with a win over the Robins but that looks a short price for a team who have conceded ten tries in two games and won only one of their last 11 regular-season Super League matches - and that was against woeful Widnes.

The Rhinos' two earlier clashes with Rovers this season were both closely contested.

Tim Sheens’s side took a surprise 10-0 lead before going down 20-11 at Elland Road in February before the Rhinos fought back from an 18-12 half-time deficit to win 20-18 at Craven Park in April.

With that in mind, it’s surprising to see the visitors afforded a ten-point handicap start, and with experienced campaigners Shaun Lunt, Justin Carney and Maurice Blair all returning to the side, backing the underdogs with the start and at 11-4 to win the match appeals.

The return of Leeds legend Danny McGuire to his old Headingley haunt adds spice to proceedings and the former England-half back is 3-1 to score at any time.

Toronto v London has the look of a must-win game for both teams. The Wolfpack have lost their last two home games having won their previous 19 and are 3-10 to get back on track against the Broncos.

The Canadian outfit won the corresponding regular-season game 32-12 and are tasked with conceding a ten-point start.

The hosts' matches are averaging 54 points and the visitors' 58, so tries should be on the menu on the artificial surface.

It could be worth backing the Broncos wingers to score. Kieran Dixon, who has notched four times in two Qualifiers, is 6-4 to add to the tally while fellow flank man Rhys Williams is 7-4.

Despite having won just one of their last 20 games, Widnes are favourites to win in Toulouse.

Olympique have won ten, drawn one and lost two at home this year.

The two losses to Leigh and Toronto came by two points so the French team merit support in receipt of more than double that.

Catalans return to action at Castleford a week after their historic Ladbrokes Challenge Cup triumph.

The last cup winners to win their next game were Warrington in 2012 and Les Dracs are 12-1 to buck the trend.

A Tigers win is overwhelmingly likely but there’s no real temptation to back Cas to give up a 22-point start.

Hull KR +10.5
6pts 5-6 Ladbrokes
Hull KR
1pt 11-4 Betfred, Ladbrokes
Toulouse +4.5
2pts 4-5 Skybet
K Dixon to score a try
1pt 6-4 Coral, Ladbrokes
R Williams to score a try
1pt 7-4 Coral, Ladbrokes

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The Rhinos' two earlier clashes with Rovers this season were both closely contested
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Sky bet