Match Report: Hull FC 18-16 Huddersfield Giants

Match Report: Hull FC 18-16 Huddersfield Giants

The match report from Hull’s meeting with Huddersfield at the Halliwell Jones Stadium

Match Report News

Hull FC held their nerve and secured two valuable competition points in a narrow 18-16 victory over Huddersfield Giants at the Halliwell Jones Stadium.

It was a close match throughout, although Huddersfield didn’t take the lead during any point on the night, as FC’s defensive resolve shone through.

Ratu Naulago and Mahe Fonua scored in the corners for FC, whilst Jermaine McGillvary kept Huddersfield in the contest before the interval.

Tries from Matty English and Aidan Sezer ensured the Giants would set up a tense ending to the game, but vital points were scored through a converted Bureta Faraimo try in the second half, and most notably, a Marc Sneyd penalty goal with six minutes remaining.

Team News

Andy Last welcomed three key players back into his squad, with Jamie Shaul, Naulago and Joe Cator all returning from spells on the sidelines.

Two-time Lance Todd Trophy winner Sneyd made his 150th appearance for the Black & Whites.

Adam Swift, Scott Taylor, Danny Houghton, Josh Jones, Manu Ma’u, Albert Kelly, Jordan Lane, Kieran Buchanan and Gareth Ellis were all unavailable for selection.

The Giants were also missing a handful of key players for the match, including homegrown star Darnell McIntosh and James Gavet.

The Match

Hull drew first blood in the match after seven minutes. Good handling skills from Sneyd kept the play alive, and the ball was spread wide to Naulago, who walked the right flank tightrope to score in the right corner on his return to action. Sneyd added the extras from out wide.

The majority of the first half remained a close-fought arm wrestle, yet Huddersfield rarely enjoyed possession in Hull’s third of the pitch.

But when they did, the Giants took full advantage. A cut-out pass found Leroy Cudjoe in space – he drew in the winger and offloaded to McGillvary, who dived in at the corner. Sezer couldn’t convert, meaning Hull remained in front by two points.

On the stroke of half-time, the Black & Whites extended their advantage with a well-worked move down the left edge.

From 40 metres out, FC made the bold decision to run the ball on the last play and solid ball-handling skills put Fonua through a narrow gap and he had just enough speed to evade the onrushing Giants defenders to score in the corner. Sneyd’s dragged conversion attempt meant it was 10-4 to the Airlie Birds as the players headed down the tunnel for the break.

HALF-TIME: Hull FC 10-4 Huddersfield Giants

After a slow start to the second half from the Black & Whites, Huddersfield arrested the initiative and parity was restored. A Sezer kick towards the sticks was plucked out of the air by English and he grounded the ball upon landing. Sezer tagged on the extras from in front of the sticks, making it 10-10.

On a night where the tries were flowing for the outside backs, it was Faraimo next to cash in with a four pointer for Hull FC. Once again, it was a last tackle play down the shortside, as Griffin assisted the former Parramatta man to slide in at the corner. Sneyd added the two points from the touchline.

Back-to-back penalties piled the pressure on the Black & Whites and Huddersfield punished their opponents’ ill-discipline when Sezer sliced through from ten metres out. He converted his own try, making it a level game once again – 16-16 with 17 minutes remaining.

With the scores still locked with seven minutes on the clock, Sezer sized up a drop-goal from 20 metres out, but outstanding Hull pressure forced the former Canberra halfback to drag his effort wide of the mark.

With Hull rolling down the field in the resulting set-of-six, Huddersfield conceded a penalty for a ruck infringement, and Sneyd decided to take on the attempt at goal from 30 metres out with just six minutes on the clock.

FULL-TIME: Hull FC 18-16 Huddersfield Giants

Squads & Scorers

Hull: Jamie Shaul, Bureta Faraimo, Mahe Fonua, Carlos Tuimavave, Ratu Naulago, Jake Connor, Marc Sneyd, Josh Bowden, Jordan Johnstone, Ligi Sao, Josh Griffin, Andre Savelio, Joe Cator

Hull Interchanges: Jack Brown, Brad Fash, Ben McNamara, Chris Satae

Hull Tries: Naulago, Fonua, Faraimo

Hull Goals: Sneyd (3/4)

Huddersfield: Ashton Golding, Sam Wood, Jake Wardle, Leroy Cudjoe, Jermaine McGillvary, Lee Gaskell, Aidan Sezer, Chris McQueen, Brandon Moore, Suaia Matagi, Kenny Edwards, Joe Wardle, Michael Lawrence

Huddersfield Interchanges: Sam Hewitt, Tom Holmes, Matty English, Jordan Turner

Huddersfield Tries: McGillvary, English, Sezer

Huddersfield Goals: Sezer (2/3)