The Rhinos made just one change from the side which demolished the Huddersfield Giants last time out as they took on a Catalans Dragons who were paying the price for on-field indiscipline against the Warrington Wolves.
The Rhinos made one change with Luke Briscoe replacing his brother Tom on the wing after the later was ruled out for the rest of the season. The Dragons were without the services of key players Sam Tomkins and Michael McIlorum, both serving suspensions.
The Rhinos lost the early season game in the south of France bit won the last time the sides met at Headingley Stadium by a 31-12 margin. A win would further ease the Rhinos relegation worries but a loss would put them right back in the mix. The Dragons came into the game desperate for a win to maintain their top five aspirations.
Torrential rain and strong wind welcomed the players to the field, the Dragons playing into the teeth of the gale.
After an even battle in the opening minutes the Rhinos recorded the opening try on nine when a Robert Lui high kick was flicked backwards by Konrad Hurrell and dribbled over the line by Ash Handley, the free-scoring Rhinos winger chasing his own kick and grounding. Rhyse Martin added the conversion from wide.
The Dragons were penalised for offside on thirteen and Martin extended the Rhinos lead with the boot.
On seventeen a brilliant run down the centre of the field from Martin, off a Luke Briscoe pass, saw the Rhinos new signing go forty metres to score under the sticks. Martin converted his own try for a 14-0 lead.
A twentieth minute penalty for Martin, this time after a high tackle from the Dragons, further demonstrated the Rhinos dominance of the opening exchanges.
Eight minutes before the break Tony Gigot was the provider as Mickael Goudemand found an acre of space to go over by the left upright. Tony Gigot added the conversion to get the Dragons back into the game.
Konrad Hurrell was sin-binned on thirty-nine for lifting in the tackle, and Gigot kicked the resulting penalty for 16-8 at the interval.
A high tackle from Brad Singleton on Greg Bird instigated pushing and shoving and referee Hicks brandished a red card for the Rhinos substitute, just as Hurrell had returned to the field.
The twelve men extended their lead on fifty-three when Handley got on the end of a Robert Lui grubber kick to juggle the ball and ground under the sticks. Martin kicked a simple conversion for 22-8.
The dirty dozen were at it again on fifty-eight when Richie Myler dived on a Brad Dwyer grubber to score the Rhinos fifth try of the night. Martin made it six out of six kicks for a 28-8 lead.
Interference at the play the ball on sixty-one gave Martin his seventh goal from thirty-eight metres to bring up thirty points for the Rhinos.
Hard work from Lui on sixty-five, sliding over the line under the tackle, and after consulting with the video referee the try was awarded. Martin made it eight from eight, the Rhinos in total control of the game with the visitors looking shattered.
Ten minutes from time the Rhinos scored the try of the game with Jack Walker making the early break before finding Myler who outpaced the Dragons defence and went fifty metres to dive over in the left corner. Martin was again on target and as the teams returned to half way David Mead was sin-binned by the referee for a late tackle in the Leeds build up.
The Rhinos won a scrum against the head on seventy-three and from the scrrm a looping ball from Lui found Luke Briscoe to score in the right corner. Martin kicked his tenth goal of the night for 48-8 final scoreline.
The Dragons are in the midst of a late season nightmare, which today manifested itself in the form of a drubbing from the Rhinos. Despite going down to twelve men the Rhinos seemed to grow in stature as the game wore on and deservedly picked up the win, thanks to a twenty-two point contribution from Rhyse Martin. Leeds are looking increasingly out of danger as they pulled four points clear of the relegation place. The Dragon need to turn their own corner, and quickly, or miss out on the play-offs.
Rhinos: Walker, Briscoe L (T), Newman, Hurrell (SB on 39), Handley (2T), Lui (T), Myler (2T), Cuthbertson, Lunt, Seumanufagai, Ferres, Martin (T, 10G), Merrin. Subs: Dwyer, Donaldson, Sutcliffe, Singleton (SO on 50).
Dragons: Gigot (2G), Mead (SB on 71), Romano, Wiliame, Tierney, Bird, Langi, Bousquet, Da Costa, Simon, Edwards, Whitley, Casty. Subs: Goudemand (T), Albert, Maria, Kasiano.
Referee: Rob Hicks.