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Leeds star’s father calls for Rhinos fans to “reduce the level of abuse aimed at players”

Leeds Rhinos’ season has been a strange one.

They have beaten every club who finished above them in the table last year and have been impressive when they have done so.

But they are one of only two teams to lose Castleford Tigers and were the last team to lose to Hull FC before their seven game losing streak.

They have won as many games as they have lost in 2023 so frustration among fans is to be expected but the father of Leeds star Harry Newman, Tony Newman, has taken to a Leeds Rhinos Fans Facebook group to call on fans to reduce the level of abuse aimed at players.

He said: “I write this more in hope than expectation but it would be great if fans could reduce the level of abuse aimed at the players. Having set amongst the away fans at Hull KR, and Leigh Leopards it is at times simply awful to hear.

“At Wigan on Friday it was clearly audible to the players behind the posts at 10-0 down after the Bevin French try. I know we all get immeasurably frustrated by Leeds Rhinos at the moment, and after 30 minutes Friday was no different, but the players don’t set out to play poorly but it happens. Ash passing to the chest of Cameron Smith and then catching it again was comedy gold!

“But then something changed and we were greeted with 40 minutes of amazing rugby league in the 2nd half which changed the mood for all including those hurling the abuse. The wins over Catalan, Giants and St Helens have been great sporting moments, in between dire performances for sure.”

He went on to emphasise that this is key with such a young side:

“With such a young team we will get caught out again, we will be frustrated as supporters as nobody wants to lose, no more so than the players. All to play for starting this weekend with I’m sure a determined Wigan after the ’embarrassment’ of Friday night.”

He also pointed out that it is the same with St Helens and Wigan Warriors fans:

“See the comments from St Helens fans of late, and Wigan fans after Friday it is often the same at these clubs so not unique to Leeds but we can try and take a stand. Win or lose always a Rhino.”

His son was certainly key to turning that frustration into adulation on Friday night as Newman intercepted twice at key moments in the game.

Leeds will be hoping that win can spark their season. They again meet Wigan on Saturday this time in the Challenge Cup.

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