Reading suffered their first home defeat since November as Robbie Brady scored the only goal of the game to give Hull victory.
Alex Pearce and Shaun Cummings both went close for the home side who started the day above the Tigers.
Brady broke the deadlock midway through the second half, firing past Adam Federici from 18 yards out.
The win saw Hull leapfrog the Royals and move into the top six with their 14th win of the season.
Brady was preferred to Matt Fryatt in attack and Nick Barmby's selection was justified when he scored only his second goal of the season. Ironically his other also came against the Royals.
Reading, whose last home defeat came against Cardiff, started brightly and both Simon Church and Kaspars Gorkss headed wide.
Brady then brought a superb save out of Federici from a 30-yard free-kick which the Australian did well to tip over the bar.
Gorkss headed wide again before midfielder Brady, on loan from Manchester United, scored the only goal of the game.
The youngster raced on to a through ball from Paul McKenna and made no mistake to give Barmby his eighth win in charge.
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Live Text Commentary
Full Time The final whistle goes and the game is over.90:00 +3:41
Short corner taken by Robert Koren from the left by-line.88:50
Noel Hunt takes a shot. Save by Vito Mannone.87:16
Joshua King fouled by Jem Karacan, the ref awards a free kick. Direct free kick taken by Paul McKenna.86:24
A cross is delivered by Michail Antonio.83:56 Substitution
Substitution Joshua King joins the action as a substitute, replacing Liam Rosenior.83:56
Corry Evans challenges Noel Hunt unfairly and gives away a free kick. Ian Harte takes the direct free kick.81:45
Long range shot by Michail Antonio goes over the target.80:15 Substitution
Substitution Robbie Brady leaves the field to be replaced by Joe Dudgeon.79:38
Foul by Corry Evans on Jay Tabb, free kick awarded. Jay Tabb restarts play with the free kick.78:20
Outswinging corner taken from the left by-line by Ian Harte, clearance made by Aaron Mclean.77:51
Aaron Mclean is ruled offside. Kaspars Gorkss takes the indirect free kick.75:33
Hal Robson-Kanu takes a shot. Blocked by Jack Hobbs.73:21
Corner from the right by-line taken by Ian Harte, clearance made by Liam Rosenior.70:44
Shot on goal by Andy Dawson from just inside the area clears the crossbar.69:30
Foul by Robert Koren on Jem Karacan, free kick awarded. Adam Federici takes the free kick.68:38
Vito Mannone restarts play with the free kick.68:38 Booking
Booking Booking for Noel Hunt for dissent.68:14
Free kick awarded for a foul by Noel Hunt on Liam Rosenior.67:21 Substitution
Substitution Adam Le Fondre is brought on as a substitute for Simon Church.
Assist by Paul McKenna.65:57 Goal scored
Goal! - Robbie Brady - Reading 0 - 1 Hull Robbie Brady grabs a goal from just inside the area low into the middle of the goal. Reading 0-1 Hull.63:39
Corner taken left-footed by Hal Robson-Kanu, Kaspars Gorkss concedes a free kick for a foul on Vito Mannone. Free kick taken by Vito Mannone.63:06
Hal Robson-Kanu fouled by Robbie Brady, the ref awards a free kick. The free kick is swung in left-footed by Ian Harte, Jack Hobbs manages to make a clearance.62:06
Aaron Mclean is flagged offside by the assistant referee. Adam Federici restarts play with the free kick.60:18 Substitution
Substitution Matt Fryatt on for Cameron Stewart.60:18
Inswinging corner taken left-footed by Hal Robson-Kanu, Headed effort from deep inside the area by Alex Pearce misses to the left of the goal.58:56
Simon Church challenges James Chester unfairly and gives away a free kick. Free kick taken by Vito Mannone.57:43
The ball is crossed by Simon Church, brilliant save by Vito Mannone.57:02
Unfair challenge on Kaspars Gorkss by Aaron Mclean results in a free kick. Adam Federici takes the free kick.55:31
Andy Dawson concedes a free kick for a foul on Michail Antonio. Free kick crossed left-footed by Ian Harte from right wing, Jack Hobbs makes a clearance.55:09
Corry Evans concedes a free kick for a foul on Jay Tabb. Jem Karacan takes the free kick.51:18
Effort on goal by Shaun Cummings from inside the area goes harmlessly over the bar.48:19
Robbie Brady sends in a cross, clearance by Shaun Cummings.45:15
James Chester gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Simon Church. Jay Tabb takes the free kick.45:01
The match restarts for the second half.45:00 +1:35 Half time
Half Time It is the end of the first-half.45:00 +0:54
Foul by Cameron Stewart on Hal Robson-Kanu, free kick awarded. The free kick is swung in left-footed by Ian Harte, clearance made by Corry Evans.45:00 +0:04
Inswinging corner taken by Hal Robson-Kanu from the right by-line played to the near post, James Chester manages to make a clearance.44:11
Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Simon Church by James Chester. Free kick crossed by Ian Harte, Andy Dawson makes a clearance.42:15
Inswinging corner taken left-footed by Hal Robson-Kanu, clearance made by Liam Rosenior.41:25
Inswinging corner taken from the right by-line by Hal Robson-Kanu, save by Vito Mannone.40:42
Inswinging corner taken by Hal Robson-Kanu, save by Vito Mannone.40:12
The ball is crossed by Cameron Stewart, Kaspars Gorkss makes a clearance.38:46
The referee blows for offside. Adam Federici restarts play with the free kick.37:49
Inswinging corner taken by Robbie Brady from the right by-line, clearance made by Ian Harte.37:17
Effort on goal by Hal Robson-Kanu from 25 yards. Save made by Vito Mannone.34:31
Corner taken left-footed by Ian Harte to the near post, clearance made by Corry Evans.33:21
Corner from the right by-line taken by Robbie Brady, James Chester has a headed effort at goal from just inside the box that misses to the left of the goal.29:49
Inswinging corner taken left-footed by Hal Robson-Kanu from the right by-line to the near post, Corry Evans manages to make a clearance.28:38
The referee blows for offside against Aaron Mclean. Indirect free kick taken by Adam Federici.24:29
Liam Rosenior fouled by Hal Robson-Kanu, the ref awards a free kick. Vito Mannone restarts play with the free kick.23:53
Robert Koren has an effort at goal from just outside the area which goes wide of the left-hand post.22:06
Inswinging corner taken left-footed by Hal Robson-Kanu, Alex Pearce takes a shot. Liam Rosenior makes a clearance.19:29
Centre by Ian Harte, Kaspars Gorkss has a headed effort at goal from close range which goes wide left of the target.19:29 Booking
Booking Andy Dawson is cautioned by the ref for unsporting behaviour.19:17
Simon Church fouled by Andy Dawson, the ref awards a free kick.16:33
The assistant referee signals for offside against Simon Church. Vito Mannone restarts play with the free kick.15:18
Foul by Shaun Cummings on Cameron Stewart, free kick awarded. Free kick taken by Jack Hobbs.14:05
Ian Harte fouled by Aaron Mclean, the ref awards a free kick. Kaspars Gorkss restarts play with the free kick.12:30
Foul by Ian Harte on Robbie Brady, free kick awarded. Robbie Brady fires a strike on goal direct from the free kick, Adam Federici makes a save. Corner taken right-footed by Robert Koren from the left by-line to the near post, clearance made by Noel Hunt.11:53
Cameron Stewart decides to take a short corner.3:31
Outswinging corner taken from the left by-line by Ian Harte, Jack Hobbs makes a clearance.2:17
Headed effort from inside the area by Simon Church misses to the left of the goal.1:11
Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Hal Robson-Kanu by Liam Rosenior. Free kick crossed by Ian Harte, clearance made by Corry Evans.0:00
The ref blows the whistle to start the match.
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