Get the lowdown on Hull FC and Warrington Wolves ahead of tomorrow’s Betfred Super League Round 3 clash at the KCOM Stadium.
Hull will play on home turf for only the second time in over 400 days, looking to extend their unbeaten run at the start of the 2021 campaign.
After disappointing in their opening round defeat, Warrington have answered early critics with comfortable back-to-back wins over Leigh Centurions and Swinton Lions.
Brett Hodgson has made two changes to his 21-man squad this week, with Miteli Vulikijapani and Jude Ferreira coming in.
Vulikijapani has been on trial with the club since the start of pre-season, and it was announced yesterday that the Fijian outside back has signed a one-year deal with the club.
The game comes too soon for Ligi Sao, whose ankle injury hasn’t yet fully recovered, though he should be fit to face Wakefield on Friday. Manu Ma’u (calf) and Josh Reynolds (hamstring) are also unavailable.
But Marc Sneyd is expected to return to the halves after missing last weekend’s cup tie with Featherstone with a dead leg.
Mike Cooper and Gareth Widdop were both rested last weekend with Warrington in cup action – the international duo are in this week’s 21-man squad and are likely to return to the field.
Former Black & White winger Tom Lineham serves the first match of a three-game suspension.
Hull 21-man squad: Connor, Faraimo, Tuimavave, Griffin, Fonua, Sneyd, Taylor, Houghton, Satae, Savelio, Johnstone, Cator, Lane, Fash, McNamara, Brown, Swift, Bowden, Scott, Ferreira, Vulikijapani
Wolves 21-man squad: Ratchford, King, Charnley, Austin, Widdop, Hill, D. Clark, Cooper, Currie, Hughes, Philbin, J. Clark, Davis, Walker, Ashton, Mamo, Mulhern, Akauola, Butler, Thewlis, Wrench
What’s the lowdown on the Wolves?
Warrington came in for criticism after their opening round defeat to Castleford, but they have shown they are made of tough stuff after demonstrating their guile in commanding wins over Leigh and Swinton over the last fortnight.
Halfback partners Blake Austin and Gareth Widdop showed their world class talent in that 44-12 Good Friday win over Leigh, with the latter scoring a brace and assisting a further two tries.
Once again, Steve Price’s side displayed their cutthroat ability to slice through the defensive line from anywhere in the field, particularly inside their own half, and that is why Hull will have to defend on the front foot.
It was confirmed recently that 2021 will be Price’s last year at the Wolves, and he will be looking to build on the 2019 Challenge Cup title he guided Warrington to before he departs the Halliwell Jones Stadium.
Ones To Watch
Hull: Adam Swift – Should Adam Swift return to the matchday squad, he could cause Warrington with a problem or two. Having sat out of last weekend’s cup match, the former St Helens winger will be chomping at the bit to return to action after two very impressive performances in the opening couple of Betfred Super League rounds. Although he is still waiting for his first try of the season, his hard work in yardage has helped the Black & Whites’ go-forward. His nimble footwork makes him a nightmare to defend against, whilst his quick play-the-balls get FC moving swiftly on the front foot.
Wolves: Toby King – Whilst the Black & Whites will be working hard to nullify the threat of Warrington’s influential pivots, there is still plenty of strike on either edge, and perhaps the most dangerous of the outside backs is Toby King, who already has five tries to his name in 2021. With braces in the wins over Leigh and Swinton, King will come into tomorrow’s match with a spring in his step, looking to keep his try-scoring tally ticking. With dangerous footwork and a strong fend-off, his opposite number will need to be on their toes for the full 80 minutes.
Key Match Details
Where: KCOM Stadium, Hull, UK
When: Sunday 18 April, 3.00pm kick-off
Coverage: OuRLeague app, exclusively available to 2021 members