Hull FC 21-12 Warrington Wolves
After Warrington’s tough route just to get to Hull for their match against FC this evening, they may well be wondering whether it was worth the exceptional effort.
For the first 50 minutes they simply weren’t clicking and, in weather conditions which meant players were inclined to take any points they could, Mark Sneyd’s boot coupled with a Bureta Faraimo try, saw the Airlie Birds take a 10-0 lead into half time. So far, so good for FC and it looked like the Wolves would struggle to get back into the game.
That feeling was even more palpable on 47 minutes after a rush of blood to head. As he was breaking into the visitor’s half, winger Faraimo was focussed on Jack Hughes, approaching him from the left and primed to tackle the American RLWC international. What he wasn’t expecting, however, was Dec Patton to ambush him from the right side. His tackle, intentionally or not, made contact with the head and Hull FC’s try scorer crumpled to the ground, unconscious before hitting the floor. Needless to say he didn’t return to the pitch and neither did Patton – ref Ben Thaler deeming the tackle worthy of a red card.
While that may well have spelled the end of Warrington’s hopes of getting anything from the match, Steve Price’s team should be commended for the way they came back from the incident which saw them reduced to 12 men. Initially conceding a further eight points courtesy of Sneyd’s boot again and Carlos Tuimavave’s try, The Wire came back strong. The 57th minute saw Stefan Ratchford produce a delightful delayed pass to put second rower Jack Hughes through a gap and the 26 year old obliged. Ratchford, with Bryson Goodwin off the pitch, converted. 18-6.
Moments later, that became 18-12. With a tackle seemingly completed, Hull’s defenders switched off – the Wolves didn’t and, as Ben Westwood got the offload away, Ben Murdoch-Masila threw the easy pass to get Ryan Atkins over the line for an easy finish with Ratchford, again, converting. With the six point margin to chase, momentum totally switched to Warrington as pressure built. A third repeat set, each due to a stray Hull FC hand knocking the ball on, saw the Wolves press mercilessly against the Airlie Bird’s defensive line. As play came out to the left edge, it looked like the visitors may have found a way to the corner but FC’s defence, lead by Jake Connor, hauled Toby King into touch. He wouldn’t have known it then but, ultimately, that snuffed out any hope Warrington had at the bitterly cold KC Stadium.
Hull closed the game out 21-12 with Sneyd kicking a late penalty and drop goal but these gifts from his boot sandwiched another red card. After Warrington’s Dom Crosby dominated the Black and White’s Liam Watts and drove him back in the tackle, the imposing forward took issue with this and aimed his head at his opposite number. An incident described by FC coach Lee Radford as a “brain explosion” saw Watts receive his first red card of 2018 after three in 2017. Radford added “He’s going to miss a lot of games because of that and he deserves it.”