LINDSAY ANFIELD believes that York City Knights Ladies have received a "massive" physiological boost in the race for silverware having seen off their two key title rivals in successive matches.

York backed up last month's 13-6 victory over last year's treble winners St Helens with a 24-10 win over former Betfred Women's Super League champions Leeds Rhinos on Sunday.

The shock pair of results have left the Knights top of the table after three rounds yet, more importantly, with renewed belief after such vital wins.

Asked how much of a mental boost the wins over St Helens and Leeds have been, director of rugby Anfield replied: “It’s massive and now they know they can do it.

"I think it’s going to put a little bit of pressure on them to be able to keep sustaining those levels.

“After the Saints game, we just didn’t want to be that team that can have a big performance one week and then goes back to their old ways the next.

“It was really important that we backed up that Saints win. In the second half, I think we definitely did, especially being down to 12.

“That’s really pleasing and, hopefully we can turn one of them over again towards the back end of the season.”

York's aforementioned reduction to a dozen players took place on the stroke of half time when interchange Rhiannion Marshall was sent off for her part in a tussle with Jasmine Cudjoe, who was sin-binned over her involvement.

“There was a little bit of pushing and Rhiannion has obviously come out on the wrong end of it," commented Anfield.

“We’ll watch the footage and make sure that we have a look at that.

“A red card means that it goes to the RFL panel so hopefully it’s just a bit of a soft red card and we have her back in the next few weeks.”

Alisha Clayton had a better time than her fellow forward, marking her comeback with an early second-half try.

“Poor Alisha got a back injury in pre-season and it’s taken her quite a while to shake that one off," sympathised Anfield.

“Now she’s back and she’s come off the bench and played about 20 minutes and scored a try which will be great for her confidence.”

The Knights now have a two-week break due to the international break before travelling to Wigan Warriors on Sunday, June 26.