We may play summer rugby, but in general UK weather has ensured that Leeds Rhinos stars haven’t had to sweat too much even at this stage in the summer, although a certain game in the warm in London in 2007 springs to mind.
Leeds could do without two yellow cards in the heat this time around as was the case that day against Brian McDermott’s Harlequins with Brent Webb twice sent to the sin bin as well as producing a Man of the Match performance.
This time the heat will come in France as the Rhinos take on Toulouse and the temperature has played a part in the game being moved.
The game was set to kick off at 18:00 but will now kick off at 19:00 UK time and 20:00 in France due to the extreme heat forecast in the South of France as Leeds look to make it three wins on the spin.
To our knowledge, it’s the first time a Super League fixture has been moved due to extreme heat with plenty of games switched around for snow and rain in the past.
It is done as a precaution to protect the players especially with the Rhinos’ squad strained by injuries which you can read a round up of here.
An negative impact on the Rhinos
This will lessen the heat’s impact on the game but not by much. This weather is likely the worst news Leeds could have received with the heat and subsequent exhaustion set to create more injury problems for Rohan Smith’s men.
It also enhances Toulouse’s home advantage. The French side have been impressive at home beating the likes of St Helens at the start of the season before utterly dominating Hull KR in their last home game.
They’ll be very confident too after their comeback win opened the door for them in the race for survival.
So, with the heat enhancing the foreign feel to this trip for Leeds, it’ll make the game more of a challenge making any result for the Rhinos vitally important.