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Leeds claim dramatic golden-point win over Broncos

Leeds Rhinos' Paul Momirovski celebrates scoring his side's second try against London Broncos
Paul Momirovski scored Leeds' second try against London Broncos [Getty Images]

Leeds Rhinos (10) 17

Tries: Handley, Momirovski, Martin Goals: Martin (2) Drop-goal: Croft

London Broncos (16) 16

Tries: Rourke, Kennedy, Macani Goals: Leyland (2)

Brodie Croft's drop goal secured a golden-point Super League win for Leeds Rhinos to deny London Broncos in dramatic fashion.

Croft's kick proved decisive on an emotional day at Headingley, 24 hours before Leeds legend Rob Burrow's funeral on Sunday.

Bottom side Broncos were just 10 minutes away from a first away win of the season before Rhyse Martin's try forced extra time.

And Croft struck just four minutes in to the additional period to boost Leeds' top-six hopes.

The Broncos made a dream start when Josh Rourke crossed for a sixth-minute try. He took advantage when the ball fell to him after Jacob Jones was denied, and Oli Leyland converted.

The hosts responded as Leeds pair Harry Newman and Ash Handley combined well for the latter to score three minutes later, but Martin's kick went wide.

Paul Momirovski put Leeds ahead with a try after great work from James McDonnell to ride a challenge before feeding the scorer. This time, Martin made sure with his kick.

But if Leeds thought they were in control, they were in for a shock. Rhys Kennedy spun out of a tackle to score, with Leyland converting to restore London's lead, before Iliess Macani went over in the corner for a half-time lead of 16-10.

Just before the hour, Broncos thought they had scored again but, after a lengthy video review, Lewis Bienek was adjudged not to have got the ball down.

Martin finally crossed just under the sticks with 10 minutes to go, much to the relief of the home fans. His successful conversion then restored parity.

Lee Kershaw almost broke through late on to win it for the Broncos but, despite strong link-up with Rourke, Leeds held on.

With two minutes to go, James Meadows' failed drop goal for Broncos meant the game went to extra time, with Croft's kick saving Leeds' blushes.

Rhinos interim head coach Chev Walker:

"I didn't enjoy it at all, it was a scruffy game and they (London) were more spirited – if it was a game about spirit they beat us, which was sad really.

"It was about concentration and we were just not committed enough to it.

"We didn't do enough consistently and we were average in most things. We have to find a way not to go through that again."

London Broncos head coach Mike Eccles:

"That definitely hurts more because of the way it happened. We were in the position to go for one [drop goal] but we’ve got two young half-backs learning their trade and this [defeat] is not on them.

"There is some regret about that, because we had practised that scenario the other week, but it is what it is. It is a learning tool for us and when the emotions die down we had some good performances out there.

"It was fantastic today. We have been beaten by 60 points this season and had great effort, and today we've been beaten by a point and you had the performance alongside the effort."

Leeds Rhinos: Miller, Fusitu'a, Momirovski, Newman, Handley, Croft, Frawley, Oledzki, O'Connor, Goudemand, McDonnell, Martin, Smith

Interchanges: Ackers, Lisone, Eseh, Sangare

London Broncos: Rourke, Kershaw, Bassett, Storey, Macani, Leyland, Meadows, Kennedy, Davis, Bienek, Lovell, Adebiyi, Jones

Interchanges: Tison, Williams, Natoli, Stock

Referee: Marcus Griffiths