Leeds Rhinos beat Warrington Wolves 26-18 in Super League Grand Final
Last Updated: 07/10/12 2:01pm
Grand Final specialists Leeds retained their Stobart Super League title with a 26-18 victory over Warrington at Old Trafford.
The Rhinos have won five of the last six Grand Finals and repeated their feat of last year in coming from fifth place to be crowned champions.
They also avenged their Challenge Cup final defeat two months ago by Warrington, whose 57-year wait for a league title continues.
Warrington came into the game as favourites and went ahead when Richie Myler took advantage of loose defence to race in by the sticks, with Brett Hodgson converting.
Ryan Hall had a try chalked off for a forward pass from Kevin Sinfield, but Sinfield himself then got over after Hodgson failed to deal with a high kick from Danny McGuire.
Sinfield converted and edged Leeds ahead with the game's first penalty after 24 minutes, before Mike Cooper's high shot gave Leeds the chance to attack with a sweeping move, with McGuire's long pass setting up Ben Jones-Bishop to barge his way in.
Back roared the Wolves as Lee Briers' pass put Joel Monaghan in unopposed and after Hodgson converted, he levelled the scores at 14-14 with a penalty on the half-time hooter.
A superb finish from Ryan Atkins edged Warrington ahead after the break but the Rhinos were not to be denied and after relentless pressure, Lunt's delayed pass put the outstanding Carl Ablett in.
The game was settled when Ablett turned provider and Ryan Hall scooted in at the corner to complete Leeds' sixth Grand Final success.
Sinfield inevitably added the extras, his 21st successful kick from 21 attempts in the play-offs this season.
Sinfield was knocked out early in the second half but stayed on the field and was rewarded for his performance and his bravery with the Harry Sunderland Trophy as man of the match.
The victory enabled Rhinos to became Super League's most successful club, with six championships since the competition began in 1996, while former England captain Jamie Peacock celebrated his eighth victory on his record-breaking 10th appearance in a Grand Final.
Leeds have now won a record eight straight play-off games in coming from way off the regular season pace to lift the title in back-to-back years.
They have also proved their resilience and spirit in each of their four victories in this year's play-offs, coming from behind to win in every one.
First Utility Super League
Tue 30th Jun
Hull K R34 - 28Salford Red Devils
Wed 1st Jul
Wakefield WildcatsvsHull FC
Thu 2nd Jul
Warrington WolvesvsWigan Warriors
Fri 3rd Jul
Leeds RhinosvsSt Helens
Sun 5th Jul
Huddersfield Giants0 - 0Hull K R
Hull FC0 - 0Wakefield Wildcats
Salford Red Devils0 - 0Catalans Dragons
Castleford Tigers0 - 0Widnes Vikings
Thu 9th Jul
Wigan WarriorsvsLeeds Rhinos
Fri 10th Jul
St Helens0 - 0Huddersfield Giants
Sun 12th Jul
Hull FC0 - 0Castleford Tigers
Salford Red Devils0 - 0Hull K R
Wakefield Wildcats0 - 0Warrington Wolves
Widnes Vikings0 - 0Catalans Dragons
Thu 16th Jul
Warrington WolvesvsSt Helens
Fri 17th Jul
Hull K RvsHull FC
Leeds Rhinos0 - 0Salford Red Devils
Wigan Warriors0 - 0Widnes Vikings
Sat 18th Jul
Catalans DragonsvsHuddersfield Giants
Sun 19th Jul
Wakefield Wildcats0 - 0Castleford Tigers
Thu 23rd Jul
Hull FCvsWigan Warriors
Fri 24th Jul
St Helens0 - 0Hull K R
Sun 26th Jul
Huddersfield Giants0 - 0Wakefield Wildcats
Leeds Rhinos0 - 0Catalans Dragons
Widnes Vikings0 - 0Salford Red Devils
Castleford Tigers0 - 0Warrington Wolves
Grand Final 2012
Gary Hetherington has paid tribute to Kevin Sinfield following his man of the match display in Leeds' Grand Final win.
Warrington's full-back Brett Hodgson insists their Grand Final defeat will make them stronger for next season.
Leeds would be happy to travel to Australia for their World Club Challenge against Melbourne, says Gary Hetherington.
- Peacock eyes eighth title
- Wolves v Rhinos: Teams
- Wolves coach vows to attack
- McDermott eyes home rule
- Briers ticks Grand Final box
- Burrow - McGuire is special
- Higham targets Grand Final win
- Hill hails untapped talent
- McGuire: Sides target us
- Wembley wins 'irrelevant'
- Hardaker relishing Rhinos life
- Rhinos ace to give his all
- Deja vu?
- Ward relishing Grand Final
- Cooper has eyes on Grand Final
- Wolves boss considers changes
- Brilliant Briers
- Warrington remain confident
- Wolves wary of Rhinos