Brilliant Castleford hammer shellshocked Leeds at Headingley

Hat-trick hero Luke Dorn rips through the Leeds Rhinos defence in Castleford Tigers' win at Headingley. Picture : Jonathan Gawthorpe
Hat-trick hero Luke Dorn rips through the Leeds Rhinos defence in Castleford Tigers' win at Headingley. Picture : Jonathan Gawthorpe

Castleford Tigers enjoyed a night to remember as they ran up a half century of points in a fantastic victory over Leeds Rhinos at Headingley.

Daryl Powell’s men made it three successive wins on the ground when they ran in nine tries in their 52-12 success.

Luke Dorn led the way with a hat-trick of tries on his comeback from injuries with the Tigers setting records galore with a result that no-one predicted.

An unbelievable first half saw Cas open up a 30-6 lead with some outstanding attack rugby.

It was Leeds who scored first when they were wrongly given a scrum then awarded a penalty to get down field and took advantage with Mitch Garbutt charging over from close range.

Jordan Lilley added the goal, but it was just about all Cas for the rest of the half.

They levelled on nine minutes when Dorn, back in the side after injury, backed up a great offload by Junior Moors to score on his comeback.

Denny Solomona then added a second Tigers try on 16 minutes as he produced a trademark flying dive to get the ball down in the corner after centre Joel Monaghan caught a Luke Gale high kick. Gale added the touchline conversion for his second goal to make it 12-6.

Jamie Jones-Buchanan was held up over the line as the Rhinos briefly threatened to hit back. But Cas were back on attack as Dorn raced onto a great kick by Gale for his second try after Gale had put his side in good field position with a dashing break from his own half.

Four minutes later Dorn had his hat-trick when he backed up Mike McMeeken’s pass out of the back of his hand near the line.

And it got even better right on half-time as after Adam Milner was held up over the line, but two plays later Dorn sent Monaghan over for a try awarded by video referee Phil Bentham despite a possible obstruction by Grant Millington on Jones-Buchanan.

Gale added another good kick to make it five out of five and make it 30-6 at half-time.

Cas fans geared up for a Leeds onslaught in the second half, but it never arrived.

It was the Tigers soon adding to their lead with another controversial try as Ash Handley failed to catch a Gale high kick under pressure from Monaghan and Solomona gather the loose ball for an easier try than his first.

Referee Richard Silverwood did not refer to the video referee this time, but replays showed that Monaghan appeared to pull the arm back of Handley.

There was no luck about the next Cas try three minutes later when Gadwin Springer produced a powerful effort, blasting and spinning his way past three would-be tacklers.

It was Champagne rugby from the Tigers now as they ran the ball from deep and almost scored again, Monaghan being tackled just short of the line.

Solomona was then pushed in touch two metres out after a Monaghan break had opened up the home defence again.

Leeds at last had something to shout about when Handley raced over after collecting Josh Walters’ offload and Lilley kicked his second goal.

But any hopes of a comeback were soon quashed as the Tigers stormed into attack again.

Paddy Flynn was denied a try on his debut by the video referee after he picked up an obstruction by Ben Crooks in the build-up. But there was no stopping Crooks a minute later as he intercepted a loose Danny McGuire pass that flicked off Brett Ferres and raced clear for his first try in Castleford colours.

McMeeken thought he had scored only to be brought back for a marginal forward pass call before a rare Rhinos attack ended when Anthony Mullally was held up over the line.

Fittingly the last word went to the Tigers when Gale produced a fantastic piece of skill to wrong foot three home players with a flicked pass out of the back of his hand and Grant Millington gleefully crossed the line for the last of the visitors’ nine tries. Gale added his eighth goal and the celebrations began and would go on long into the night in Castleford.

Scorers - Leeds: Tries Garbutt, Handley; goals Lilley 2. Castleford: Tries Dorn 3, Solomona 2, Monaghan, Springer, Crooks, Millington; goals Gale 8.

Leeds Rhinos: Golding; Handley, Watkins, Keinhorst, Hardaker; McGuire, Lilley; Galloway, Burrow, Garbutt, Ferres, Jones-Buchanan, Cuthbertson. Subs: Sutcliffe, Achurch, Mullally, Walters.

Castleford Tigers: Dorn; Flynn, Crooks, Monaghan, Solomona; McShane, Gale; Patrick, Milner, Jewitt, McMeeken, Moors, Massey. Subs: Millington, Cook, Springer, Tickle.

Referee: Richard Silverwood

Half-time: 6-30.

Attendance: 17,213.