Extending their unbeaten home run, Hull FC produced a clinical display to beat Salford 45-14 at the KCOM Stadium on Friday night.
Here are the Five Things Up the Cream learned.
1.. Faraimo finding his feet
It was a tough start to life at Hull FC for Bureta Faraimo, as the powerful winger got knocked out, sent off, and suspended. Finding any continuity was difficult for him as he was in and out of the team but he’s looking at home now, despite only being back from his latest ban two games ago.
In 15 appearances he’s managed 11 tries now which is just one short of Fetuli Talanoa. He’s running the ball well and his power causes problems for the opposition. Defensively there’s room for improvement, but one can be satisfied with what we’ve seen so far this season.
We know the more game time he gets, the stronger he’ll get, which is exciting to say the least.
2.. Hull lads leading the way
It was refreshing to see Hull’s injury crisis handled so well again by the younger players at the club – with Radford once again giving them their opportunity.
In total, 10 local lads took to the field against Salford, with Shaul, Logan, Harris, Taylor, Washbrook, Green, Downs, Fash, Matongo and Litten all featuring in the game. All baring Harris have come through a Hull FC Academy, with the former obviously being the latest one to bite the dust over the river, and who can blame him.
It’s a great achievement and with six of those 22-years-old or younger, it makes for an intriguing future. One things for certain, Adam Pearson’s vision for a team of locally produced lads is more than obliged to now. Credit must go to Lee Radford – you can never under-appreciate the job he’s done here, bringing on the likes of Downs and Logan in particular, who were both outstanding.
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3.. Jake the Snake for England
Calling one of your players to play for their country is a complement to their form, and sorry, but it will be absolutely criminal if Jake Connor isn’t involved in the upcoming Denver test. He’s an absolute freak and his skill sets are up their with the best in Super League.
Connor ran the show for Hull FC again in the absence of Marc Sneyd and Albert Kelly. He was superb – having a key hand in several tries and coming up with some huge plays.
Some of the things he does are mesmerizing and he makes it all look so simple. That’s the sign of a gifted player – a maverick, something few and far between in the game in this day and age.
4.. French fan club getting bigger
Hull FC’s last real French hero was Patrick Entat, but Hakim Miloudi is on his way to earning that title. Beetlejuice was outstanding again, showing a clean pair of heels for his try, and looking for the ball throughout.
After a World Cup disaster with France where he was omitted from the squad for disciplinary reasons, and a first half of his Hull FC debut he won’t want to remember, he’s coming on leaps and bounds. Testament to him, Hakim is genuinely exciting to watch and you long for the ball to go in his hands. We’ve got a talent here, and he’s only going to get better and better.
5.. Another injury but still in the mix
2018 has been an absolute nightmare for Hull FC injury wise, with the latest black cat striking back as Joe Westerman limped off with a knee injury in the first half.
Westy left the game in a knee brace and is set for scans on Monday. Already without Griffin, Talanoa, Kelly, Sneyd, Houghton, Hadley, Bowden, Abdull, and Manu, the last thing Hull need is another absentee.
The fact that we’re still within striking distance of the top four is commendable, but we won’t use injuries as an excuse. We’ve had some poor defeats this year, but we know we can consolidate that with strong home form, continuing with a win over Wigan next week. In context of our season, that’ll be absolutely huge. Come on you Ull.