7th October 2017, 20:32 | grand final
Leeds Rhinos have been crowned Betfred Super League champions for an eighth time, following a masterful display led by Harry Sunderland winner Danny McGuire, against Castleford Tigers.
The result sends Hull KR-bound McGuire and retiring hero Rob Burrow away from Headingley on a huge high, as was the case two years ago when Kevin Sinfield, Jamie Peacock and Kylie Leuluai left the club in 2015.
McGuire was instrumental in the first try of the game as his cross-field kick found Tom Briscoe who touched down in the corner.
It happened!!!! pic.twitter.com/yqQluNAhCY— Danny McGuire (@DannyMcguire6) October 7, 2017
The stand-off then added a drop goal on the hooter to give Leeds a 7-0 half-time lead.
Castleford had won all four meetings against their West Yorkshire rivals in 2017, but Leeds' Grand Final experience started to show as McGuire then went over for a try of his own on 52 minutes.
Winger Briscoe then went over for his second on the hour mark, giving the Rhinos a 17-0 lead with just a quarter of the game left.
That career 🙌— Betfred Super League (@SuperLeague) October 7, 2017
Super Leagues 💍💍💍💍💍💍💍💍
Harry Sunderland Trophies 🎖️🎖️
Challenge Cups 🏆🏆
World Club Challenges 🌍🌍🌍 pic.twitter.com/X8Oft8jBeN
McGuire made it a dream send off in Blue and Amber as he then scored his second of the match, his eigth Grand Final try in total.
With just two minutes to go, Castleford ensured they didn't go down as the only club to be nilled at a Grand Final as Alex Foster crossed for a try, which was converted by Man of Steel Luke Gale.
Victorious Leeds Rhinos coach Brian McDermott said: "To finish second second and make the Grand Final is fantastic. To win it after what happened at the club last year, I'm lost for words.
"We were pretty dominant there. When a group of people go through the emotions we have been, it makes you so strong as a group."
Departing hero McGuire commented: "We said to the boys to leave everything out there and the commitment from the lads was outstanding.
"When you go to be the night before you want it to happen, but you've obviously got to work hard and we really did."
Daryl Powell, coach of the League Leaders Shield winners Castleford, said: "It's pretty gut-wrenching for a group of lads that have done so well all season, to put in such a poor performance today.
"Even without Zak Hardaker, I feel we had enough to win the game. When you lose a key player like a full back, it's going to be a massive hindrance."