Super League: Hull earn bruising derby win over Hull KR
|Hull KR (12) 12|
|Tries: Lunt, Mantellato Goals: Mantellato (2)|
|Hull FC (16) 22|
|Tries: Michaels (2), Lineham (2) Goals: Sneyd (3)|
Hull overcame serious injuries to Leon Pryce and Gareth Ellis to claim a hard-fought derby win over Hull KR.
Pryce's arm injury and Ellis' snapped Achilles made the Black and Whites' half-time 16-12 lead, thanks to two Tom Lineham tries, all the more impressive.
Steve Michaels also scored in each half as Hull defended doggedly but always carried plenty of threat going forward.
The result secures Hull's place in the top eight but barring a miracle Rovers are consigned to the middle 8 places.
Lee Radford's side had the better of the early exchanges and scored first, with Shaun Lunt darting over from close range just before Pryce limped off after falling heavily on his arm.
Steve Michaels' brilliant diving take from Marc Sneyd's kick into the corner got Hull on the board before Albert Kelly's high kick set up Kris Welham to take and offload to Josh Mantellato, who touched down.
A suspiciously forward looking pass to round off a cross-field passing move set up Lineham for his first try of the night in the right hand corner, but just minutes later Ellis, without anyone near him, went down in agony and had to be helped off the field.
Lineham twisted through two tackles to bag his second before the break, pushing Hull in front, and it was a lead they held onto until the final hooter.
After the restart Michaels added his second when, controversially, he stripped the ball out of Ken Sio's grasp, and having fallen 10 points behind, Rovers then put everything into attack but left themselves vulnerable at the back, and were lucky to avoid conceding more.
But Hull's defence was resilient as their attack was dangerous, and they survived all that was thrown at them for a famous win - but one that came at an injury cost.
Hull coach Lee Radford:
"I'm going to see Gaz [Gareth Ellis] in hospital now, it doesn't look great.
"He's huge for us, people walk on the field next to him and grow six inches so for him not to be there would be a big blow for us.
"Leon came down awkwardly on his shoulder and so we'll have to assess that.
"Losing Leon and Gareth were huge blows for us but Jordan Abdull showed he's going to wear the black and white for years to come. It was always going to be difficult and to do it in the manner we did was a real credit to the group".
Hull KR coach Chris Chester:
"That's two weeks on the bounce we've failed to score in the second half. I'm very disappointed with the contact and with the way we played in that second half.
"We didn't get any field position, we weren't smart with the ball and we kept coming up with silly individual errors. We put ourselves in a decent position to win the game. I thought it was more than a four-point wind but we couldn't get out of our half.
"They kicked us to death. They beat us in the ruck and kicked the ball better than us."
Hull KR: Dixon, Mantellato, Welham, Salter, Sio, Blair, Kelly, Tilse, Lunt, Puletua, Larroyer, Horne, Burke, Walker.
Replacements: Walker for Tilse (20), Cockayne for Lunt (48), McCarthy for Burke (26), Donaldson for Walker (56).
Hull: Rankin, Lineham, Talanoa, Logan, Michaels, Pryce, Sneyd, Bowden, Houghton, Watts, Ellis, Minichiello, Westerman.
Replacements: Abdull for Pryce (11), Green for Bowden (19), Whiting for Ellis (34).
Ref: Richard Silverwood (RFL).