After romping to a treble success of the League Leaders Shield, Grand Final and Ladbrokes Challenge Cup last year Leeds Rhinos ace Tom Briscoe is expecting his side to face some tough battles in the campaign ahead.
The 2015 Lance Todd trophy winner, who scored a record breaking five tries in the Rhinos 50-0 Wembley win over Hull KR, was on hand to make the draw for the first round of this year’s competition at Wembley Stadium earlier today and afterwards claimed Leeds will be marked men this term.
“We won the treble last year so everyone will be out to stop us this year,” the 25-year-old explained.
“The aim this year is to repeat the highs we hit last season. There’s nothing we could have done last year that we didn’t achieve but this year were in the World Club Series so it would be nice to do well there and add that to the run.“
Leeds have lost three key players from last season in Jamie Peacock, Kevin Sinfield and Kylie Leuluai but Briscoe claims that the new faces coming into the club are up to the challenge of filling the void and explained that with those losses in mind the current crop has been going all out in pre-season to ensure they start with a bang this time round.
“We’ve had a few departures in key areas but Brett Ferres and other key signings have been made and hopefully they can do us a job,” he added.
“We played a match on Boxing Day so there wasn’t much indulgence over Christmas and we’ll be raring to go when the Super League starts in the coming weeks.”
Briscoe saw his old club Featherstone Lions drawn against the Royal Navy and the Rhinos ace will be keeping an eye out to see how his hometown side progress.
“My old club have been drawn against the Navy that will be an interesting tie and a good experience for the Lions. I didn’t get to play in the Challenge Cup while I was there but I know it’s a huge competition for the town. They got to Wembley years ago so there’s history and it’ll be a great experience for them,” he said.
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