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Leeds Rhinos coach Chev Walker has say on Grand Final attendance

On Saturday night Leeds Rhinos came up short at Old Trafford in the Grand Final against St Helens.

The Rhinos went into the final on the back of 10 wins from 11 games as they defied the odds to climb from a relegation battle to fifth in the league and all the way to the Grand Final.

Despite tries from Kruise Leeming and Rhyse Martin, Leeds lost 24-12 to Champions St Helens who claimed a fourth consecutive title.

There were plenty of talking points, Saints’ dominance being one of them and what next for a developing Leeds side being another.

People were keen to identify Konrad Hurrell’s try against his former club as a key moment whilst others looked to a kick to Tom Briscoe at 6-0 as a key moment.

But one talking point was the attendance of 60,783. This was the lowest since 2001 excluding the last two years which were impacted by the pandemic.

Many have been to say that this is disappointing, but Leeds Rhinos coach Chev Walker has battled against these claims noting that as with the last two years there are certain things making it difficult for fans to attend events like this.

He said on Twitter in reply to comments about the attendance: “The demographics of our sport and the economic climate at this moment in time mean we should celebrate that 60k people attended last night.

“Lots of People don’t have surplus money so realistically the neutral fan may not want to spend on a ticket and that’s any price.”

Walker has played in two Grand Finals doing so in 2004 and 2005 both against his future club Bradford Bulls winning one and losing the other.

Of course on the losing side on Saturday, Walker tasted Grand Final glory yesterday with his under 18s side who defeated St Helens at the Totally Wicked Stadium 26-22 in golden point after two Jack Sinfield drop goals saw the sides level.

In golden point Sinfield’s third effort at a drop goal was blocked but opened up the field for Kyden Frater to score the winner.

So, there’s stuff for Leeds fans to be happy about at the moment.

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