High flying Warrington Wolves look to extend their good run, as they travel to face Hull FC in round eight of the Betfred Super League. Here’s everything you need to know.
TEAM FORM GUIDE
The Black and Whites bounced back from their home defeat to Wakefield with a victory down in the capital against newly promoted London Broncos. Hull scored 18 points at the start of the second half, but had to hold on after a late Broncos fight back. Hull currently sit fifth in the table.
The Wolves also had to survive a late fight back last week when they faced Wakefield. Steve Price’s side conceeded four tries in the final 15 minutes but narrowly held on by two points. Warrington have won six of their seven fixtures so far, with only an away defeat to Catalans Dragons in round four. They are currently second in the table.
Lee Radford makes three changes from the side who beat London. Full back Jamie Shaul missed out after suffering a head injury during the second half of last weeks contest. Ratu Naulago also misses out along with Gareth Ellis.
Hull welcome Fetuli Talanoa into the squad for the first time this season as well as returns for Mark Minichello and Joe Westerman, who both played in Hull’s last home match.
Hull FC 19-man squad: Faraimo, Tuimavave, Griffin, Talanoa, Kelly, Sneyd, Taylor, Houghton, Hadley, Minichello, Westerman, Thompson, Matongo, Lane, Paea, Miloudi, Litten, Washbrook.
Warrington have the luxury of being able to name an unchanged squad. Ben Westwood is serving his second match of a four week suspension.
England international Ben Currie is in line to make his 150th career appearance.
Warrington 19-man squad: Atkins, Austin, Charnley, Clark, Clark, Cooper, Currie, Hill, Hughes, King, Lineham, Livett, Mamo, Murdoch-Masila, Patton, Philbin, Ratchford, Tasi, Walker.
HEAD TO HEAD
Hull had a mixed season last year and one of their low points was the last time the two sides met. The Wolves ran in 14 tries in an 80-10 domination. New Zealand international Bryson Goodwin scored five of those tries. However, he will be unable to inflict the same damage as he is still missing through an ankle injury, which he suffered against Castleford earlier in the month.
In recent years, Hull have a very good home record against the Cheshire side. In the last four meetings at the KCOM, Lee Radford’s side have won three of the meetings including 21-12 in their only meeting in Hull during 2018.
The side have an equal split in the last ten matches, each winning five. However, Hull won the most important fixture during that time back in August 2016 at the Challenge Cup Final. Hull scored 12 unanswered points in the final 20 minutes to break their Wembley hoodoo.
Danny Houghton (Hull FC) v Daryl Clark (Warrington Wolves)
Both hookers could play a pivotal role as they look to get their side on the front foot. Danny Houghton has had a good start to the season, including a couple of key breaks last weekend against London. Houghton, not surprisingly, is Super League’s top tackler in 2019, with 361 tackles in the opening seven rounds. Hull have also been threatening from the play the ball when Jez Litten has come on from the bench, with Houghton being moved to loose forward on a couple of occasions.
Daryl Clark has been one of the most consistent performers for the past few seasons for the Wolves. Clark often starts breaks as he attacks the defence straight from the play of the ball, as well as supports breaks from players like Ben Murdock-Masila. The 26-year-old will be a constant threat to Hull and is part of the reason Price’s side are towards the top of the table. Along with Stefan Ratchford and Blake Austin just to name two, they threaten all over the pitch.
THE IMPORTANT DETAILS
Date: Friday 29th March
Venue: KCOM Stadium
Referee: Robert Hicks
WHO WILL WIN?
An interesting fixture with an intermittent Hull side hosting arguably the strongest side in the league. Hull still are without eight first team players but still have enough to test Warrington. However, I think it could be close but an away victory as the Wolves have been very strong so far and it is hard to oppose the league’s second top scorers.