Post-match reaction to Leeds-36-6 victory over Hull.
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Leeds coach Brian McDermott admits his side may find it difficult to consistently reach the standards they hit in tonight's opening 36-6 season-opening victory over Hull at Headingley.
Hull were without newly-appointed skipper Gareth Ellis after he injured a foot in the warm-up, and although they battled to keep the Rhinos at bay for almost an hour, they finally buckled under the pressure of a second-half onslaught from the Super League champions.
Leeds were level at 6-6 at half-time but cut loose in the last 25 minutes to score tries through debutant Joel Moon, Danny McGuire, Ryan Hall, Chris Clarkson and Jamie Peacock, to add to Kevin Sinfield's early try.
"It was a tough one to start with and we knew it would be," McDermott said. "For 60 minutes it could have gone either way.
"Although it was 6-6 at half-time, I thought we were the more dominant team. But had Hull scored early in the second half it would really have been game on.
"I thought we were very good. They lost Gaz Ellis and it obviously affected them. As the end went on, our strike had a bearing on the game.
"You can't reach that level every week but you can maintain that effort."
Hull coach Peter Gentle, whose side scored an equalising try through debutant centre Joe Arundel, refused to use the loss of Ellis as an excuse for the defeat.
"It started bad and got worse," he said. "It's tough losing your leader like that but we're not going to use that as an excuse.
"At 6-6 I thought we were going okay but we fell apart in that second half.
"We started playing like individuals when Leeds went up a gear. It's a massive reality check for us, it shows how far we're off the top teams in this competition.
"We've a lot of work to do but I still believe we can get there. I don't think that's a fair indication of what we can do."
Meanwhile, Gentle will anxiously wait for news on the injury to Ellis, who suffered a broken foot last year.
"He'll go for a scan and an X-ray and take it from there," he said. "We could have probably needled it and risked him, but this early in the season there is no point doing that."
Leeds also lost a new signing to injury, with Australian winger Joe Vickery going off in the first half with an ankle problem.
"I don't think it's good," McDermott said. "He's not moving about very freely."