Leeds coach Brian McDermott was happy to forgive his side's defensive frailty as they overcame the absence of nine first-teamers to gain a 38-28 win over Widnes in their rearranged Super League game.
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McDermott was forced to include three 18-year-olds, including debutant Jordan Baldwinson, to offset the loss of the regulars, who included captain Kevin Sinfield, whose dislocated thumb brought to an end his 97-match run going back almost three years.
"We had a fair bit to do tonight," McDermott said. "Ultimately we came up with the goods.
"It wasn't the most clinical performance you've ever seen - we were a bit leaky defensively - but I think you've just got to roll with that when you field so many youngsters and people out of position.
"We needed to get the job done tonight, to get the two points, and we did."
Former England skipper Jamie Peacock stood in manfully as captain, playing close to the full 80 minutes, while Sinfield's stand-off role was taken by teenager Liam Sutcliffe, who scored the game-clinching try five minutes from the end.
"JP contines to impress but I thought he had a great support cast," McDermott added.
"Ian Kirke really stepped up as a starting prop and Brad Singleton deservedly got man of the match.
"The young fellas all stepped up. I thought Jordan Baldwinson had an impact off the bench, Liam Sutcliffe continues to impress and I'm pleased for Thomas Minns that he got more game time."
Ben Jones-Bishop made a fairytale return to the Leeds side after recovering from an eight-month lay-off with a blood clot on his lung by scoring a try while Rob Burrow touched down twice to leapfrog former Bradford winger Lesley Vainikolo into ninth place in the list of Super League's all-time leading tryscorers with 137 and winger Ryan Hall's brace included the 150th for the club.
Widnes, who lost by a point to a Wigan side lacking nine first-teamers in their previous game, fought back after twice trailing by 12 points to lead 22-18 early in the second half but once more fell short, much to the frustration of coach Denis Betts.
"There's plenty getting away from us at the moment," he said. "They keep slipping away.
"We're pretty good value at the moment and I'd love to be a neutral watching this team but it's as frustrating as ever. We're two inches away from winning.
"It's individual errors and a lack of focus that is costing us. We are making less mistakes but they are still crucial ones. We've got be stronger as a group and keep driving those small margins up.
"The group are working hard for each other but at the moment it's pretty painful and I feel for them.
"We are getting better but the table doesn't reflect that because we're losing by a few points."