Exclusive: Ex-Leeds Rhinos man opens up on players like Ash Golding and other youngsters left Headingley

Sam Hallas and other young players at Leeds Rhinos had the toughest challenge in sport as they were tasked with replacing the Golden Generation.

For many of them, their careers would have success beyond Headingley rather than in the Blue and Amber.

For three of them, it was a case of moving away from each other after spending their whole careers together though two ended up reuniting at Odsal.

Hallas revealed as such speaking to Serious About Rugby League:

“I’ve played with Jordan Lilley since I was 12 years at Stanningley. I know his game inside out, it hasn’t changed since he was 12 years old and same with Ash Golding, we played in the school rugby team together and at Stanningley.

“It makes it easier and it’s nice to have that familiar face and have memories ti chat about in the changing room.

“It’s nice to look back on where you’ve come from.

“Ash is doing incredible things in Super League with Huddersfield, it’s great to see them doing well, I like to see my mates do well same with Brandon Pickersgill who is one of the best fullbacks in the competition.”

When asked if he was surprised that Golding and Lilley, the expected future of the number one and seven shirts at Leeds, went on to pastures new, Hallas said:

“No, I’m not really surprised with anything in sport. You look at why Ash didn’t stay as Leeds number one, it’s because Jack Walker was coming through, and now Walker is at Bradford. These things happen in sport, people are always going to leave places, it’s a very unpredictable business anything can happen.

“I’m not surprised that Ash has gone on to have a fantastic Super League career because he works harder than anyone I’ve seen, his attitude

“It’s no surprise to see what he’s doing and same with Jordan, he’s one of the best halfbacks in the Championship and that comes through so much natural talent and likewise he works hard in the gym so it’s not surprise that they’re successful in what they’re doing because they work hard.

“Is it a surprise to see them doing well, no? Is it a surprise that they left Leeds? I don’t think so, that happens in sport, nothing surprises me in rugby league.”

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