Preview of tonight's Challenge Cup... LeagueUnlimited.com - NRL & Rugby League A View From The Hill ...
29 hours ago
Warrington Wolves 24
Tries: Riley 2, J. Monaghan, King
Goals: Bridge 4
Leeds Rhinos 26
Tries: Hall 2, Ablett, Burrow
Goals: Sinfield 6
Leeds Rhinos reached their fourth Grand Final in five years with a dramatic late win over League Leaders Warrington Wolves at the Halliwell Jones Stadium.
The Wolves came into this Semi-Final as odds on favourites against the Rhinos, who they had defeated in their two previous meetings this year by amassing over 40 points in each game.
But the underdogs Leeds were in good form, since their agonising loss at Wembley, they had won four on the bounce and despite finishing fifth they had the momentum behind them.
And it was the visitors who would strike first when, from a Danny McGuire kick, the returning Carl Ablett pounced for the opening try on four minutes. Skipper Kevin Sinfield added the extras.
On 15 minutes the Wolves were back on parity as Matt King knocked the ball back for Chris Bridge to send Joel Monaghan over.
Warrington lost Brett Hodgson to a ligament injury and they were forced to switch Chris Riley Full-Back.
And On 32 minutes Riley was on hand to take a long pass from Michael Monaghan to score underneath the posts as the hosts went into the break with a 12-6 lead.
Leeds came out strong at the start of the second half and within a minute they were level as Ryan Hall intercepted a Simon Grix pass and raced in from 55 meters.
After running a penalty, Warrington re-took the lead as a Richard Myler long pass found Matt King who powered his way over the line. Bridge kicked the touchline conversion to make it 18-12.
However, the Rhinos turned the game on its head with a devastating two try burst in three minutes. Rob Burrow made the break for the first, Danny McGuire carried on the move and, when he was eventually collared by Ryan Atkins, he was able to offload to the supporting Hall who went over for a double.
The Wolves were still reeling when full-back Brent Webb broke through their first line of defence to send Burrow on his way and Sinfield's fourth goal made it 24-18 as Leeds took hold of the game.
Despite misfiring, the Wolves managed to get on terms 12 minutes from time as Lee Briers finding the inside pass for Riley to go over for his second score of the game.
In dramatic final 10-minutes of the game King was held inches short of the line and Sinfield missed a penalty goal from 52 meters out.
Then, with just under two minutes left on the clock Myler was caught offside after charging down Sinfield's drop-goal attempt and the Leeds captain maintained his composure to slot the 25-metre penalty between the posts.
It was the decisive act of a pulsating finale which reduced Warrington's players to tears and enabled the Rhinos to become the first team from outside the top three to reach Old Trafford.