Burrow: Leeds will need best performance of 2017 to beat Castleford
Rob Burrow knows Leeds Rhinos will need to produce their best performance of the season if they are to beat Castleford Tigers in the Super League Grand Final on Saturday.
Castleford stormed to the League Leaders' Shield, topping the table with a 10-point advantage and a positive points difference of 429 - 284 more than any other side in the Super 8s.
The Tigers have won all four of their encounters with Leeds this season, leaving outgoing Rhinos icon Burrow in no doubt his team will have to put on a special display if he is to win an eighth Grand Final before retiring.
"I think they've been by far the best team in the league and the deficit of points in front I think proves that," he told Omnisport.
"They're a great team to watch, aren't they? If ever there's a game on that you want to watch as a neutral it'd be Cas because they've got some great rugby on show.
"Obviously first-class coaching from Daryl Powell and his coaching staff and has been for a number of years so we know we'll need to find a performance we haven't found this year.
"The one against Hull last week won't be good enough, we need to play beyond what we've been playing this year and that's what it'll take to beat a team like Castleford.
"But the lads are really confident. It's the game we want to play in and the games we want to stand up and play well in.
"This is a cliché but it is who turns up and plays best on the night because whoever wins on the night, the games before that are pretty irrelevant."
Burrow thinks Leeds' best chance at Old Trafford will come if they can stop Castleford getting points on the board during the early stages of the match.
He said: "Well we haven't managed to [beat them] this year and we thought we'd got the right game plan, but I think Castleford start really, really big.
"In big games they always come out the blocks so I think we not only need to negate that, I think we need to put them under pressure as well. But I think against a team like Castleford there is no sort of weakness or anything like that.
"We've just got to play better than we play all year and if we do that and we get people like Kallum Watkins at their best and Joel Moon and the pack being physically dominant they will take some beating. But we need to play better than we played all year to beat them."