Rohan Smith responds to Harry Newman criticism

After Leeds Rhinos were heavily beaten by Wigan Warriors and Catalans Dragons, questions were raised about the club including star player Harry Newman.

The star centre has been criticised for his attitude with Brian Carney even suggesting that the Rhinos should sell the centre.

Rohan Smith has responded to these suggestions.

He said: “Yeah, I haven’t seen the stuff that you’re talking about and I thought the sin bidding on the weekend wasn’t correct.

“Harry made a tackle at the end of a break. Adam Kieran got involved in the tackle and Sam Tomkins helped Harry to stay down. So it was an easy one where the score of the game and the result was never in doubt.

“So it was an easy one to send in when the crowd roared. But I think he’s shown in that game his actual demeanour and behaviour towards everyone involved, players, referees, he was very mature and probably the best he has been and he’s made some real progress in the last couple of months.

“He cares a lot, he demonstrates that care sometimes differently to how others of us do and he shows some of his frustrations but that kid tries hard, wants to do his best and he’s learning. I think, well, he wants to own his errors and work on himself.

“That kid’s got a big future, so what’s happening outside of our walls, that’s for those people to make comment. But Harry was really trying to help his young teammates on the weekend and being a young bloke himself, he was putting his arm around other guys and being really positive.

“Even on Sunday when we were delayed, when everyone just wanted to get home and get into their own bed and see their loved ones, he was getting around and speaking to sponsors and just being a good leader. The trip on the weekend wasn’t his best performance on the field, but some of his actual actions that have been criticised in the past, he handled that part really well.”

Asked if Leeds was the best place for him, Smith said:

“Yeah, I think our priority is to get Harry into the team plan as well as we can and then he can showcase all of his abilities.

“Harry and I have got an excellent relationship. He’s got a good relationship with his teammates and he’s, like all of us, we’ve got things that we need to improve on.

“He’s working hard on some stuff and in the game on the weekend he had every reason to get a bit frustrated but he actually, I thought he did well in lots of regards and as I mentioned I thought the sim bidding was a classic case of milking and it was an easy.”