Match Preview – St Helens Ladies vs Leeds Rhinos Women


Jodie Cunningham of St Helens and Sophie Nuttall of Leeds pose with the Women’s Super League trophy ahead of Sunday’s Grand Final

Jodie Cunningham has given herself little time to celebrate being named a Woman of Steel for 2021, at least not until St Helens has faced Leeds Rhinos in the Women’s Super League Grand Final this Sunday.

The Saints have already claimed the Challenge Cup and League Leaders’ Shield, then booked their place in the Grand Final with a 58-0 win over the Castleford Tigers at Totally Wicked Stadium two weeks ago.

Securing the title at Emerald Headingley would be the ideal way to complete what has been a successful season on both a team and personal level, and while Cunningham is delighted to be honored on an individual level, it would mean even more to her team. crowned champions.

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October 10, 2021, 2:30 pm

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“It means a lot [to be named Woman of Steel], “Cunningham said Sky sports. “I would not say that I am a flashy player, I just want to work hard for the team and try to be consistent so that it is recognized is brilliant.”

“I can’t celebrate too much just yet as we are all focused on the Grand Final, but it’s definitely really good to be recognized for your efforts this season.

“It would be a dream come true, especially making the 3s. We haven’t brought any trophies to the Saints in previous seasons and we definitely made it our goal to bring some back to St. Helens.”

Leeds, who were defeated by the Saints en route to their Challenge Cup success, enter the game as the defending champion following their 2019 Grand Final victory; Last year’s Women’s Super League was canceled due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

I can’t celebrate too much just yet as we are all focused on the Grand Final, but it’s definitely really good to be recognized for your efforts this season.

Jodie Cunningham, St Helens player and Woman of Steel 2021

It’s been a year of change for the Rhinos, with former player Lois Forsell now head coach and the team bringing in multiple players from an academy setup that, as the men’s team has done for so many years, is beginning to prove its worth. . excellent completion school for talented girls in the Leeds area.

One of the players on the successful 2019 squad that has overcome that setup is full-back Caitlin Beevers and the 19-year-old English international is determined to make sure Leeds doesn’t let her crown slip away after beating the York City Knights 22. -18 in the semifinals.

“It’s a great achievement and we don’t want to lose it like that in just 80 minutes,” Beevers said. Sky sports.

“We’ve been working hard and making sure it’s not just those 80 minutes you’re responsible for, but the initial sessions, so we’re very excited about that.

Women’s Super League: Saints and Leeds will play the Grand Final

All the action from the Women’s Super League semi-final double-game at Totally Wicked Stadium as the top four clashed.

“Our main goal is to start well. Against York, I think the chance came to some girls and we’ve done it now, so it can’t be a reason or a fault.”

“I think we are really going to step forward and that should be the main goal: to start well and be relentless. That is one of our keywords, relentless, and it will be an important part of the game this weekend.”

Although the game will be played at Headingley, the Rhinos will be nominally the ‘away’ team as they finished below St Helens in league standings this season.

Cunningham believes the Saints have left the opening game of the year behind in April when they racked up an 86-0 win over the Bradford Bulls, but the England star has no doubt that there is still more to come from the team as they move forward. . aim to finish work on Sunday.

I think we are really going to take a step forward and that should be the main objective: to start well and be relentless.

Leeds full back Caitlin Beevers

“That first game we did brilliantly, and we built it up throughout the season,” Cunningham said.

“I think it just shows all the hard work that we did during the offseason and it all comes into play on the field.

“We just want to make sure this grand final is the best yet, we still have improvements to make and if we can put it all together on Sunday we hope it will be a St Helens win.”

Named squads

St Helens: Jodie Cunningham, Rebecca Rotheram, Naomi Williams, Amy Hardcastle, Natasha Burke, Zoe Harris, Vicky Whitfield, Tara Jones, Pip Birchall, Emily Rudge, Chantelle Crowl, Beth Stott, Darcy Stott, Dawn Akrigg, Paige Travis, Carrie Roberts, Danielle Bush , Eboni Partington, Rachael Woosey, Alice Sandham, Isabelle Rudge.

Leeds Rhinos: Caitlin Beevers, Sophie Robinson, Chloe Kerrigan, Fran Goldthorp, Hanna Butcher, Courtney Winfield-Hill, Amy Johnson, Keara Bennett, Aimee Staveley, Elle Frain, Sophie Nuttall, Danika Priim, Ellie Oldroyd, Tasha Gaines, Sam Hulme, Lucy Murray, Ella Johnson, Orla McCallion, Zoe Hornby, Beth Lockwood, Elychia Watson.

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