Two top four contenders collide in a huge game at the KCOM Stadium. Here’s everything you need to know…
Hull welcome back two big names who didn’t make the trip to Catalans last weekend, with Marc Sneyd recovering from illness and Jamie Shaul returning after a family bereavement.
The defeat in France came at a cost with both starting half-backs suffering injuries. Albert Kelly will be out for a number of weeks with a hamstring injury, while a broken leg has ended Jordan Abdull’s season.
One piece of positive news is the inclusion of Joe Westerman in the squad for the first time since his re-signing, and he could make his second debut against the side he started his career with.
Hakim Miloudi scored his first Hull try last week in the absence of Shaul, but now drops out. The other change to Lee Radford’s squad sees Chris Green bolster the forward pack.
Hull FC 19-man squad: Shaul, Faraimo, Tuimavave, Griffin, Talanoa, Sneyd, Taylor, Houghton, Hadley, Minichiello, Bowden, Connor, Green, Washbrook, Manu, Paea, Lane, Matongo, Westerman.
Castleford received a huge blow this week with the news that scrum-half Luke Gale will be out for three months with a knee injury sustained in last week’s win over Wakefield.
With Ben Roberts also out of action, Daryl Powell will have to reshuffle his side, with Jamie Ellis likely to remain at 6 and Cory Aston coming into the squad to potentially partner him in the halves.
Alex Foster is back in contention for the Tigers, and he comes into the squad in place of Calum Turner in the only other change.
Castleford 19-man squad: Minikin, Webster, Shenton, Eden, Ellis, Moors, McShane, Millington, Holmes, McMeeken, Milner, Sene-Lefao, Wardle, Foster, Cook, Springer, Trueman, Green, Aston, Watts
HEAD TO HEAD
Castleford came out on top in the reverse fixture back in February, with captain Michael Shenton scoring two of the tries in a 28-18 win at the Jungle.
Despite Castleford’s dominance in 2017, Hull beat the Tigers in three of the four meetings last season, including both clashes at the KCOM Stadium.
KEY BATTLE – Scott Taylor vs Liam Watts
One intriguing subplot to this clash is the return to Hull for Liam Watts, two months after Lee Radford allowed him to move to Castleford in a big-money transfer.
Watts developed into one of Super League’s best prop forwards in his six years at the club, but left abruptly after receiving a fourth red card in less than a year for a headbutt in Hull’s home win over Warrington.
Hull have arguably missed his power since that move, so it will be interesting to see whether his former teammates, including England international Scott Taylor, will be able to stop him having a big impact on the game.
THE IMPORTANT DETAILS
Date: Saturday 5th May
Venue: KCOM Stadium
Referee: Gareth Hewer
WHO WILL WIN?