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Hull FC waste chance to go second
Hull FC 22 – 44 Salford Red Devils (Saturday August 17)
By Beverley FM rugby league reporter Ian Judson
Hull FC failed to seal their play-off spot with a frustrating defeat at home to in-form Salford Red Devils.
The visitors made it six wins from the last six games and left the Black & Whites ruing a missed opportunity to go second in the Betfred Super League ahead of a two-week break.
Lee Radford resisted the temptation to unleash new signing Chris Satae from the start, with the big Tongan prop named on the bench.
Joe Westerman returned from the illness that had ruled him out of the victory at Wakefield Trinity last week, with the former England international named in the pack.
Jamie Shaul and current England player Jake Connor had recovered well enough from knocks picked up at the Mobile Rocket Stadium to retain their starting places at full-back and stand-off respectively.
Salford were handed the first attacking chance from a knock-on by Hull on their own 20 metre line and they duly took advantage as Ken Sio forced his way over. Krisnan Inu added the extras.
A knock-on by Inu after he had claimed a high bomb on his own line then set up an attacking chance for the Airlie Birds. Hull duly took advantage as former Salford prop Scott Taylor was put through a huge gap.And another former Salford player, Marc Sneyd, was inevitably on target to bring the scores level.
A controversial scrum award for the Red Devils after Mickey Paea appeared to be the victim of a high shot gave them territory and possession again, but resolute defence held them out and forced a knock-on as they moved towards Sio’s wing again.
A silly penalty on half-way for holding down in the tackle gave Hull chance to test the Red Devils’ defensive line again. From the resulting pressure, a deft short pass by captain Danny Houghton allowed prop Mickey Paea to crash over under the posts; Sneyd added the extras for a six point lead.
A knock-on from a broken field kick by Salford substitute Petero Nakubuwai gave the home side more territory and possession, which was added to with a penalty as well.
Another swift move from the Black & Whites then saw winger Bureta Faraimo cross in the corner for Hull’s third try, however Sneyd was wide with the touchline conversion this time.
A rare mistake from Gareth Ellis presented Salford with a much-needed chance, with a penalty soon following. Finally prop Lee Mossop forced his way over under the posts; Inu again added the goal.
As the arrival of Satae on the pitch for his debut was welcomed, Salford again handed Hull territory and possession with a penalty for a ball steal. However, a grubber kick to the in-goal area by Jake Connor was just too heavy for anybody to take advantage for the Airlie Birds.
A silly penalty for a second effort in the tackle gave the visitors another opportunity close to the Hull line, and again Ken Sio dived in at the corner to bring the scores level. Inu was off target with the kick.
Plenty of incident ensured the rest of the half passed very noisily and generated a lot of atmosphere in the KCOM Stadium, without either side able to register further points.
Half Time: Hull FC 16 Salford Red Devils 16
A dropped ball by Danny Houghton in broken field gave Salford an opportunity early in the second half, from which they profited as Jake Bibby gave them the lead back. Inu added the extras again.
A knock-on by Jamie Shaul then presented the visitors with another scrum on Hull’s 20 metre line. From the resulting pressure Mossop crashed over for a controversial try from a forward pass and Inu added the goal from in front of the posts.
Hull were becoming more and more frustrated, particularly with a succession of questionably high tackles by the visitors and they needed some spark from somewhere, which seemingly arrived as former Salford player Josh Griffin and his former teammate Kris Welham traded blows.
After both players were spoken to by referee Scott Mikalauskas, play carried on with the scrum that Hull had forced when Welham was bundled into touch.
Griffin was then deemed not to have grounded the ball as the Airlie Birds attacked at the other end – the ease with which they had got their with sheer brute force causing some optimism among the home supporters.
Another penalty was dispatched into the Salford half by Sneyd and from the opportunity a delicious offload by Connor provided a simple touch-down for Jordan Lan;, Sneyd again added the extras.
From the kick-off the ball went out on the full, giving the home side a penalty on half-way and another chance to crank up the pressure on the visitors line.
However a wayward pass from Sneyd was behind Faraimo and floated harmlessly into touch.
It was the visitors who struck again as Inu got on the end of a Hastings kick to extend their lead, the former rugby union convert then converted his own try.
Salford gained another chance when Kris Welham intercepted a Sneyd pass and from the pressure the Red Devils added to their lead as Hastings crossed in the corner.
Another Salford attack rubbed further salt into the wounds as Inu crashed over for another try from close range, then added the goal again.
Final Score: Hull FC 22 Salford Red Devils 44
Hull FC: Jamie Shaul, Bureta Faraimo, Carlos Tuimavave, Josh Griffin, Ratu Naulago, Jake Connor, Marc Sneyd, Scott Taylor, Danny Houghton, Mickey Paea, Joe Westerman, Jordan Lane, Gareth Ellis: Interchange: Josh Bowden, Brad Fash, Kieran Buchanan, (Tevita) Chris Satae
Salford Red Devils: Niall Evalds, Ken Sio, Kris Welham, Jake Bibby, Krisnan Inu, Tuimoala Lolohea, Jackson Hastings, Lee Mossop, Logan Tomkins, Adam Walker, Josh Jones, Ryan Lannon, Greg Burke: Interchange: Mark Flanagan, Joey Lussick, Petero Nakubuwai, Josh Johnson
Scorers: Hull FC: Tries: Scott Taylor (8) Mickey Paea (17) Bureta Faraimo (22) Jordan Lane (60) Goals: Marc Sneyd 3/4 Salford Red Devils: Tries: Ken Sio (3, 33) Lee Mossop (25, 48) Jake Bibby (42) Krisnan Inu (65, 75) Jackson Hastings (70) Goals: Krisnan Inu 6/8
Penalties: Hull FC: 7. Salford Red Devils: 3. Goal Line Drop Outs: Hull FC: 0. Salford Red Devils: 0. 40/20s. Hull FC: 0. Salford Red Devils: 0
Man of the Match: Jake Connor