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St. Helens v Hull FC- Preview

Lee Radford takes his side looking for a fourth consecutive victory at Langtree Park in an intriguing Ladbrokes Challenge Cup 6th round match.

The black and whites will travel in confident mood having already claimed one victory there this year when a Marc Sneyd drop-goal separated the sides in Super League on 1st April.

Saints will be stiff competition though for the Airlie Birds, and in good form themselves after recent victories over the likes of league-leaders Warrington Wolves and 2014 Finalists Castleford Tigers on the road, either side of a dramatic win at home to champions Leeds Rhinos.

Squads:

St. Helens: McDonnell, Lomax, Peyroux, Percival, Owens, Fages, Walsh, Amor, Roby, Walmsley, Greenwood, Wilkin, McCarthy-Scarsbrook, Vea, Richards, Ashworth, Tasi, Knowles, Dawson

Hull FC: Shaul, Naughton, Fonua, Yeaman, Talanoa, Pryce, Sneyd, Taylor, Houghton, Watts, Ellis, Minichiello, Hadley, Washbrook, Bowden, Green, Thompson, Turgut, Tuimavave

Preview:

This should be a cracking game for the television cameras with two genuine heavyweight sides both bang in form going head-to-head.

Much will ride on which pack gets on top and, therefore, affords their dynamic half-back pairing the most time and space to work their magic. The mercurial Luke Walsh and Theo Fages both have the running and distribution to hurt any side, but in ex-Saints player Leon Pryce and POTM nominee Marc Sneyd Hull definitely have the guile and kicking game required to keep turning the home side around and frustrate them.

Hull will miss Frank Pritchard and Sika Manu who are down-under on international duty, but in skipper Gareth Ellis and former NRL star Mark Minichiello they have excellent replacements that most sides could only dream of having to bring back into the squad.

Having had to come from behind to snatch the points there last month, and making the Challenge Cup a massive priority, Hull will probably try and get off to a fast start, if they do, and get up a head of steam, it could be a very uncomfortable experience for the inconsistent hosts.

If Saints, on the other hand, get off to a good start they will take some catching, however the warning for them is that if they get in front, having seen some of Hull’s recent performances against the likes of Warrington, Hull KR and Saints themselves, they’ll know that they cannot relax for one minute.

Prediction: Hull win by 10

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