LEE DOUGLAS: Club needs more players like Loni Loni

Lee Douglas' weekly column
Lee Douglas' weekly column

Loni Loni played his last game for us on Saturday before heading back to New Zealand.

I have to say, it’s been a pleasure having Loni with us this season, he’s a great man and a great rugby player and the club needs more lads like him about the place.

He’s really embraced his rugby since coming over, has been an ever-present at training and just does exactly what is asked of him on the pitch.

It was fitting that he put in his best performance of the season on Saturday and I would love to see him come back to us next season.

Saturday’s defeat at Beverley was a frustrating one for many reasons.

Without sounding like I’m making excuses, we had one or two lads suffering from illness, and I was left baffled by some of the refereeing decisions.

Don’t get me wrong, Beverley played some good rugby and the scoreline reflected the game in the end, but we were stifled by some bizarre refereeing.

Our skipper Matty Jones really had to battle through the game and he was in a bad way afterwards.

That’s testament to Matty, he’s a great leader and he dug deep to see the game out.

The ref really did stop us from putting any phases together, he just kept pinging us every few minutes, which stopped us playing.

That was compounded late on when one of their players made contact with one of our guys heads and he ignored it and didn’t penalise them.

That said, we gave it a good go in the second half and Graham Hoggmade a huge impression off the bench.

I don’t want Hoggy on the bench, but he was carrying a knock.

He made a huge difference second half to us, everything we seemed to do went through him, and his communication was second to none.

A lot has been said that our promotion hopes are now over after our defeat at Beaver Park.

I for one have been in this position before when I was at Bridlington.

You just have to win your games in the build-up and hope the sides above you slip up.

The ball is firmly in West Leeds’ court, all we can do is apply as much pressure as possible.