Leeds only won six games in the whole of 2001/02, but are already half-way there after just three rounds of the new season and have maintained their impressive 100 percent record this year.
That is a record that NEC Harlequins can only look on enviously after their slumped to their third straight loss, fourth if you count last season’s final game, with Cameron Mather’s late try denying them even a bonus point for all their hard work.
It was a sharp reversal of last season’s corresponding fixture when Quins ran out 40-16 winners, a result that eventually helped condemn Leeds to bottom spot, only being saved from relegation by off-field moves, a decision that Leeds’ form this year has seemingly vindicated.
When Harlequins’ stand-off Paul Burke opened the scoring on 11 minutes, the home side seemed to be settled but were soon hit by the first of two tries from rising Leeds’ star fullback Danny Scarbrough, the metronomic Braam van Straaten adding the extras and a penalty soon after.
Down 3-10, Quins soon evened things up with a try from Fijian centre Vili Satala on his first start for the club and they edged ahead when Burke knocked over a well-taken drop-goal two minutes later.
That left the scores at 13-10 to Quins at half-time but Leeds came out all guns blazing, Scarbrough scampering through for his second try, Van Straaten once again adding the extras and his second penalty a few minutes later.
Burke notched his second penalty to cut the deficit but another penalty from Van Straaten had seemingly given Leeds the breathing space, but that was before a great try from Will Greenwood capped a productive day for the Quins’ centres, the conversion from Burke tying things up at 23-23.
However, Van Straaten made Quins pay after the home side conceded a late penalty before flanker Mather compounded Quins’ misery by crashing over for his side’s third try of the day, Van Straaten raising his tally to 18 points as the ten-point margin denied Mark Evans’ men any reward for their efforts.
NEC Harlequins:Tries: Satala, GreenwoodCons: Burke 2Pens: Burke 2DG: Burke
Leeds Tykes:Tries: Scarbrough, MatherCons: Van Straaten 3Pens: Van Straaten 4