Match Report: Hull KR 18-16 Hull FC
The Black & Whites fell agonisingly short in their opening game of the Betfred Super League season against cross-city rivals Hull Kingston Rovers with a last-gasp score from Jimmy Keinhorst claiming the points for the hosts.
The Black & Whites led for periods in both halves of the contest, with Sika Manu and Matty Dawson-Jones giving Lee Radford’s men an early lead.
The Robins hit back with their own quick-fire scores before the break, before Hull regained the lead in the final quarter of the game thanks to a breakaway score from Bureta Faraimo.
But the drama would go down to the final seconds of the game as Tim Sheens’ managed to claim a dramatic victory in the final seconds thanks to a late try in the corner from debutante Keinhorst.
The Black & Whites went into the game without several key names, including half-backs Albert Kelly (shoulder), Jake Connor (suspension).
While long term absentees Josh Bowden (knee), Chris Green (achilles), Joe Westerman (knee) and Fetuli Talanoa (knee) continue their rehabilitation following last season.
Meanwhile, Jordan Thompson made his first appearance since returning to the club, while Matty Dawson-Jones made his competitive debut in the clash.
Marc Sneyd made his first-appearance since picking up a knee injury in July, while Jez Litten featured in his first derby since July.
Hull took first blood in the clash after a quick-paced opening quarter of an hour - prolonged pressure on the Rovers line after resulted in Sika Manu crashing over from short range after collecting a smart pass from Danny Houghton out of dummy-half. Sneyd slotted the conversion over, his 500th career goal.
The Black & Whites consolidated their strong early position in the contest as Danny Washbrook made the most of a Robins loose ball, with Jamie Shaul and Carlos Tuimavave battling for the ball from a high kick, and the hosts failing to grasp possession - his smart grubber kick through was collected by Matty Dawson-Jones for a debut try. Sneyd kicked a second goal from the touchline.
Hull continued to dominate the early stages of the game with the lion-share of possession within the first-half hour. However a penalty conversion attempt was sent wide by Sneyd with 12 minutes remaining in the half as Radford’s men looked to extend their lead.
Tim Sheen’s side were dealt a lifeline and an opportunity to return fire in the game as Joel Tomkins slid over for the hosts first score of the season. Drinkwater converted.
And after Hull’s early domination in the game, the Red & Whites had hit back with their own two quick-fire tries. Mitch Garbutt got on the end of a clever Drinkwater grubber to touch down unchallenged. Drinkwater kicked his side level.
The debutant then added a penalty kick in front of the posts to put Hull KR ahead just before the break.
HALF-TIME: Hull KR 14-12 Hull FC
The Robins continued in the form they ended the first-half after the restart with ten minutes of constant pressure on the Hull. But an impressive 40/20 from Sneyd once Hull retained the ball turned the pressure on its head. However, after earning consecutive sets after a goalline drop-out, Hull coughed up possession after a Jamie Shaul forward pass.
The full-back quickly redeemed himself with an important try-saving tackle at the opposite end of the pitch.
But against the run of play, Hull regained the lead with 12 minutes left in the contest. A superb pass out wide from Sneyd was collected by Faraimo, whose beastly run allowed him to beat the Robins defenders on his way to the line. Sneyd missed the goal.
The drama though would go down to the final seconds with new Robins recruit Jimmy Keinhorst diving over in the final seconds of the match to claim the win.
FULL-TIME: Hull KR 18-16 Hull FC
Hull KR: Chris Atkin, Ben Crooks, Jimmy Keinhorst, Junior Vaivai, Craig Hall, Danny McGuire, Josh Drinkwater, Mose Masoe, George Lawler, Robbie Mulhern, Joel Tomkins, Kane Linnett, Wellar Hauraki.
Hull KR Bench: Danny Addy, Mitch Garbutt, James Greenwood, Tommy Lee.
Hull FC: Jamie Shaul, Bureta Faraimo, Carlos Tuimavave, Josh Griffin, Matty Dawson-Jones, Danny Washbrook, Marc Sneyd, Scott Taylor, Danny Houghton, Masi Matongo, Sika Manu, Mark Minichiello, Dean Hadley.
Hull FC Bench: Jez Litten, Jordan Thompson, Mickey Paea, Jordan Lane.
Hull KR Tries: Tomkins (32), Garbutt (34), Keinhorst (79)
Hull KR Goals: Drinkwater (3/4)
Hull FC Tries: Manu (15), Matty Dawson-Jones (18), Faraimo (68)
Hull FC Goals: Sneyd (2/4)