With the ground breaking tour to NSW now at the half way stage, hullfc.com will be providing a daily behind the scenes update for fans from down under.
The day began with a rush hour commute from Manly Wharf to Sydney Central Quays, with the choppy waves but picturesque views providing a slightly different route into training for the boys!
Sydney Roosters Scrimmage
The first event of the day was one of the most eagerly anticipated of the whole two week tour – the scrimmage session with Sydney Roosters.
Organised alongside former Hull FC star Craig Fitzgibbon, who is now the Roosters assistant coach, the Black & Whites headed to Allianz Arena and Moore Park, the home of the Roosters to train alongside them for the morning.
The session quickly progressed from the warm up and pre-activation drills into some sharp handling sessions and then onto 13 on 13 opposed sessions, with the Roosters stars including Cooper Cronk, Jaraed Warea-Hargreaves and Jake Friend all staring in the session.
Friend, who is the Roosters captain for 2018 was pleased with the session, saying “I really enjoyed it. It’s good to see how other clubs work, and was good to see some of the big fellas really going after each other!”
“It’s good to see how other clubs work, and was good to see some of the big fellas really going after each other!”
“It’s always good to get another club in and test our shapes against them, and also have the Hull shapes thrown at us in defence to see where we’re at. They throw plenty at you and we’ve had a really good day.”
Back-rower Jack Downs was also delighted with the session, saying: “Today was the one thing on the schedule I’ve been looking forward to the most all trip.”
“Growing up, I watched a lot of NRL with my dad, and you know that over here the level & standard they set themselves is the benchmark. I learned a lot from the session, especially from their wrestle coach at the end who gave us some really good tips to work with through the season.”
Through the afternoon, there was plenty of activity for the players, with three members of the squad rewarded for their hard work off the field through the tour by climbing the Sydney Harbour Bridge. Centre Josh Griffin, plus youngsters Brad Fash and Jack Downs climbed the bridge thanks to Destination NSW, getting panoramic views of the city from the top of the iconic bridge!
Eventful Afternoon For Mini!
Whilst the rest of the squad were off having fun, Italy captain Mark Minichiello had an action packed afternoon!
Before leaving the Roosters, the former Gold Coast Titans back-rower headed to the tri-colours offices to have an extended interview with their Community Ambassador, Anthony Minichiello! The full interview will be available on Hull FC Live on Wednesday GMT!
The busy afternoon continued for Minichiello, as he headed to Blues Point Reserve in Northern Sydney for the official group photos with Wigan skipper Sean O’Loughlin, as well as Thomas Burgess and Nene MacDonald from South Sydney Rabbitohs and St George Illawarra Dragons, respectively.
Minichiello, who is now in his fourth season away from the NRL said: “A few young guys will come in at the weekend and get their chance after Saturday’s game and it’s a big opportunity for them to get a run against an NRL team.”
“I’m hoping to be fit for the game, I ran with the physio today and we’ve still got a few days up our sleeve and it will be good to get a run against an NRL side that’s for sure.
“Tag is rejoining the boys today after his appendix surgery, so hopefully he can now have a nice relaxing holiday!”
Video Analysis Session
The final event of the day was the second video analysis session of the trip following a successful session with NRL Community Coaches last week in Kiama.
This week, the session was with supporters on the official club tour in the team hotel, as Assistant Coach Andy Last and Video Analyst Richard Peaks guided the fans on how the coaching staff put together a weekly tip sheet and a review of Saturday’s game against Wigan Warriors.
Supporter Chris Young, who attended the session said: “I really enjoyed it. I like learning about the detailed and technical side of the game, and Lasty is clearly a very detailed coach. I liked hearing where we went right and wrong at Saturday’s game against Wigan.”
“The 80 minutes always goes so fast, so to pick up on the smaller details was really interesting, and I thought we got a great insight tonight, and it’s great to learn more about the game.”
Tomorrow the side will head for training, with a specific focus on preparing for St George Illawarra Dragons on Saturday evening.
The guys will then have the afternoon to explore Manly and the surrounding areas before a Meet The Fans event at Manly Beach from 7pm.
You can follow Hull FC’s historic tour of New South Wales by checking back at late morning UK time or late evening Australian time every day throughout the tour for our regular round up, and by following regular updates on our Snapchat and Instagram stories @HullFCOfficial