Options is a blessing Hull FC have in abundance going into the 2017 Super League season.
Whilst combinations and team cohesion get nurtured in training, head coach Lee Radford is faced with the final decision of who he selects for the competition opener at Wakefield.
That itself, given the sheer volume of numbers, will be a difficult choice, but, and unlike previous years, the options on the right edge are there.
Mahe Fonua and Steve Michaels
Hull FC’s desired approach going into the final half of last season, the Fonua and Michaels partnership grew as the year progressed.
At centre, Fonua just got better and better, ending up with a Super League Dream Team place in his debut season.
He was pretty much unstoppable, and as time went on, his understanding with fans favourite Steve Michaels increased.
Carlos Tuimavave and Mahe Fonua
It’s a big and brave call to move Fonua back to the wing after his eminence at centre, yet if Radford wishes to play Carlos Tuimavave this season, it’s something he may have to do.
Fonua could have a weakness in his knee after his injury last year, and this could affect his ability to defend in the centre position.
Carlos meanwhile is expected to compete for the right centre spot – an edge he is familiar with after linking up with Sika Manu and Fonua himself from stand-off in 2016.
Jake Connor and Mahe Fonua
One of Lee Radford’s biggest challenges this year will be getting the best out of Jake Connor.
An attacking force, there’s debate to where Jake will be best suited, yet one position he could feature in is at centre.
He has all the components to play there, and with Fonua outside him on the wing, this could be a potent partnership.
Jack Logan and Mahe Fonua
A serious injury to his knee has kept Jack out of pre-season so far, but the young centre is edging closer to a return.
It will likely be a few months before we see any action from him, and at first that will be in the reserves, but come mid to end season, you expect he’ll be competing for a first team spot again.
Josh Griffin and Fetuli Talanoa will occupy the left edge spaces, and for Radford, Jack is another option for him.
The 21-year-old has bags of pace and a great ability to break the line, giving try assisting service to his winger.
Jack Logan busting the line for Hull FC reserves against Halifax. Image: Ian Thresh. Mahe Fonua cover image from Hull FC Media.
Hull FC’s right edge looks formidable going into 2017. With new signing Albert Kelly pulling the strings and Sika Manu asserting his presence, good things will happen.
There’s options here and a lot will depend on where Radford will play Mahe Fonua. The Tongan is a shoe in starter after his attacking brilliance last year, yet his partner, whether that’s a centre or winger partner, remains a mystery.