Leeds v Wigan reaction
Leeds coach Brian McDermott was delighted with his team's tenacity as they ground out a hard-fought 18-14 victory over Wigan at Headingley.
McDermott got the response he wanted after last week's 32-8 home defeat by Huddersfield but was still frustrated by his team's inability to finish off their opponents.
The champions led 18-8 after an hour thanks to tries from Ryan Hall, Joel Moon and Jamie Jones-Buchanan, all converted by Kevin Sinfield to take his career points tally beyond 3,500.
But they missed two other glaring chances and Wigan struck back through former Leeds rugby union player Iain Thornley to add to Liam Farrell's first-half try and set up a tense finish.
"We weren't great last week but tonight we showed a lot of resilience and a lot of grit to get the game," McDermott said.
"I didn't think we were great with the ball, although we had two clear-cut chances for tries and bombed them.
"We've a smile on our faces but it was a frustrating win. Defensively I thought we were strong and credit goes to Wigan, too. It was a tight game, I thought both teams defended each other out of the game.
"I've got to mention Brett Delaney for the way puts himself about. If we could put 13 Brett Delaneys on the field, we wouldn't lose many games because he runs his blood to water."
Wigan's second defeat of the season cost them the chance to go top of the table and it once more came in the absence of England star Sam Tomkins, who missed out after picking up a "dead" leg in his club's last training session.
Pat Richards switched from the wing to full-back but was one of several players less than 100 per cent fit and, hampered from the start by a groin injury, handed the goalkicking duties to Matty Smith.
The Warriors' defeat came at the end of a week in which coach Shaun Wane's father passed away, with the players wearing black armbands as a mark of respect.
"I lost my dad on Wednesday, which is sad," he said. "I needed a distraction and wanted to get back in work as soon as I could.
"It was a poor finish to the week. I was proud of our effort but individual errors cost us.
"Leeds are a great team and you can't turn up here with ordinary errors like we did."
Wane admitted his side missed the creativity of Tomkins, who will link up with the England squad this weekend.
"The changes affected us," he said. "It was a late change with Sam and a few people played busted.
"I still believe we had a team that could come here and win but you have to commend Leeds. They can grind out wins, they've done it to us so many times.
"They were better than us in major parts of the game. We were not consistent in our attack. At times we lacked a bit of composure but we'll bounce back."
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