Hull look to end losing streak on home turf


Hull FC will look to end their run of seven successive defeats as Huddersfield Giants make the trip across Yorkshire on Sunday afternoon.

The Black and Whites were once again well beaten at Headingley last time out , and they remain second bottom in the Super League table as they look to record only a second success at the MKM Stadium this campaign. Despite the poor run of form, head coach Tony Smith has remained confident that his side are capable of addressing the situation.

“We’re remaining positive about getting better.”

“We’re going through some processes here at the moment and some changes. It’s hurting us and it’s hurting our supporters. We get that. We can’t wait for when we’re putting smiles back on their faces, but we have to remain positive here and upbeat.

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There have been questions raised about his squad in recent weeks, but Smith has full belief that this team can produce a performance against the Giants to turn their fortunes around;

“We’re forging ahead and we’re trying to get a better performance this week. If we get a better performance, it gives us a chance.

“If we’re going out there and we’re thinking we’re not as good as everybody keeps telling us we’re not and start believing all that, then we’ve got no chance. We’ve got to be real about where we’re at but we’ve also got to be positive. That’s what we’re being this week.”

The Hull squad sees just one change from their defeat against Leeds as halfback Jake Clifford returns after an ankle injury, he takes youngster Harvey Barron’s spot in the 21. Will Gardiner keeps his place in the fold after making his first appearance of the season against Leeds and despite some  concerns, Scott Taylor and Andre Savelio remain in the squad.

As for the Giants, they look to build on an impressive win against Catalan and nail down a run of consistent form to match their recent improvement. Despite a win against the Dragons last time out, head coach Ian Watson has highlighted the qualities of Hull FC and won’t underestimate them on Sunday afternoon;

“They have Tony there who is a great coach and knows how to mould a team.

“It’s about building things. If you have success straight away, that is not going to last. You have to build something.”

“I know the quality of Tony, he will get it right but hopefully he doesn’t get it right this weekend.”

One man in the Giants squad who knows all about Hull FC is the maverick , Jake Connor who returns to the MKM Stadium for the first time since departing last Autumn. The 28-year old was a standout player for the Black and Whites and helped them achieve a Challenge Cup success back in 2017, but he only has a Huddersfield victory in his sights this weekend.

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“I don’t quite know and I don’t know if I’m bothered what reception I get,”

“I spent a long time there so it’s going to be quite an exciting day for me but there’s only one job on my mind and that’s to get the win.”

“We’ve done our preview and we know what they’re capable of if we let them play so we’ve just got to focus on what we can do.

Despite his qualities , Connor was omitted from Shaun Wane’s 40-man England squad this week, but Watson believes he could’ve made the cut.

“He is an international player, obviously he has not been named in the squad but he is a top end international player who can cause international teams problems.

“That’s not my job to select the international team. But for me he is definitely in our top five players in this country and should be in the international squad for me but like I say that is not my job.”

Like Hull FC, Huddersfield only make one change to their squad , with Oliver Wilson returning after a two-game absence in place of Kieran Rush. The Giants are still without the likes of Ashton Golding, Olly Russell and Theo Fages.

This match will also take place at the slightly delayed time of 3:05PM on Sunday afternoon to avoid any conflict with the Government testing the new National Alert System.

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