Last night on Sky Sports, it could have been a bit awkward as former Leeds boss Richard Agar watched on as his former side defeated Hull KR.
Agar was the Sky Sports studio guest after he recently confirmed he would be taking a coaching role at New Zealand Warriors in the NRL instead of staying at Leeds Rhinos in a different role following his decision to step down as Head Coach.
Agar took over midway through 2019 at Headingley steering Leeds away from relegation before delivering the Challenge Cup in 2020. In 2021 Leeds made the Super League semifinals and big things were expected in 2022 as Leeds brought in an exciting quartet of signings but the Rhinos instantly struggled and had just one win to their name as Easter loomed which led to Agar stepping down.
By the time Rohan Smith took over, Leeds had won three games in 11 drawing another. In the 11 after Leeds won seven before making it eight from 12 last night against Hull KR helping cement the Rhinos revolution under Smith which has seen Leeds climb into the play-off spots now with a three point lead on the chasing pack although Salford and Hull FC have games in hand over the weekend.
Nonetheless, Smith deserves much credit for the transformation at Leeds, but last night when asked about his role in the turnaround he differed the praise to his players and the overall state the club was in when he arrived hinting praise the way of Richard Agar and the set up he’d installed in his three years as head coach suggesting it is Agar’s ground work that Smith is building on.
Smith said live on Sky Sports: “They’re a good bunch of people and I knew that before I got here, I’d done my homework. They’re a good group, very receptive and it was left in pretty good hands.
“I know the season hadn’t started well but the group weren’t far away and I’ve run into it at the right time and the credit has to go to them and the work they’ve put in and finding different ways to win.”