Five things we learned from the battle of Post Office Road

Challenge Cup holders Hull progressed to the quarter-finals with a 38-20 win over Featherstone in front of the Sky Sports TV cameras in a game packed with incident. We take a look at five things we learned.

Featherstone’s attacking quality
Some were surprised when Featherstone sacked Jon Sharp ahead of The Qualifiers last season, but their progression under John Duffy has long since vindicated that decision. The newly appointed joint Scotland coach has Featherstone playing an attractive style of rugby and they showed some great attacking shape. Sure, their defence could have been better and they struggled to handle Hull at times, but it’s clear to see why Luke Briscoe has been over for so many tries when you look at the shape Rovers create on the right. Imagine combining that with the left hand side of Castleford’s attack…

Jake Connor is the real deal
He’s turning in to somewhat of a pantomime villain, and he will come up against much sterner tests than last night’s Championship opponents, but Connor is continuing to show what a quality player he is. Branded by some as a wind-up merchant, he’s got an edge to him which just adds to the complexity of him as a player and he must be a nightmare to play against both for that and the quality he possesses. With extra responsibility sure to be handed to him in the absence of Albert Kelly and Marc Sneyd, he’s got everything in his locker to carry the Hull team forward. Could England honours be on the horizon by the end of this season?

Players must take responsibility as officiating improvements will take time
Though the players do have to take responsibility for a lot of things that are going on at the moment, there are issues with the officiating in rugby league. A lack of numbers and experience mean its an unenviable task for all referees, who are having to be put under pressure of big games so early in their careers. The problem is there isn’t an overnight solution. The fact opinion is split on Twitter on match nights goes to show how difficult it is for referees to make calls on subjective incidents, but the inconsistency of decisions and the over-reliance on the video referee is becoming an almost constant backdrop to every game. How can the game try and grow successfully when it is carrying these issues?

We love a bit of biff really
Hull ended the game with nine men and there can’t be many instances of that happening, certainly in recent memory. The game got ugly in the final quarter, but ultimately a perfect game of rugby league doesn’t exist. Sure there was niggle and incidents, but given the nature of the sport that’s to be expected. It provided far more talking points than otherwise, and though Lee Radford apologised at the end of the game for the way it turned out, we shouldn’t be ashamed when a game takes a turn like that.

Less is more
By the end of the game, there were nearly more Sky Sports commentators at the game than Hull players on the pitch. Sky have of course done great things for Super League, but the sheer number of people they have chipping in during games is unnecessary, all fighting to give their opinion on the same incident. The constant mistakes over the name of Luke Briscoe, who was called virtually everything else but his name in the first 20 minutes, were frustrating too.

What did you think of last night’s game? Let us know in the comments below.

5 Comments

  1. Great game this is how Rugby League should be played,Featherstone has always been a small town but with a heart of a Lion and fear no one , you have to remember all Hull players are professional,Fev’s are nearly all semi- pro a credit to them for giving Hull a game they will remember and will not want to repeat in a hurry.

  2. a trip back in time to featherstone…….where time stood still. scummy people scummy place. I thought bransholme was bad but this shithole takes some beating….and they have the cheek to slate Castleford 😉

  3. The commentators don’t do any research on Championship sides. Fev had Luke Burgess in their side when given the fact that Luke BRISCOE needed a try to equal a record should have really known what his name was. They quoted that Fev had a giant killing history in the cup “they beat Wigan in the cup though it was in 1952” the commentator said. What about beating St Helens on three occasions Bradford Wakefield and Castleford on numerous occasions and the latter being as recent as 2012.Warrington in their own back yard and of course Hull at Wembley. Just to name a few.Sky commentators are scared to big up the lesser so called teams.Perhaps if there was just one commentator there would be less belittling. Like Fev have brought Hull down into the trenches. The fact is Fev decided to get in their faces and the result could have been a different story if they could have started like that.Rant over.

  4. Poor referee ing turned the game sour how did fev player stay on pitch after disgusting hit on Shaul without the ball a definite red card from there he lost the plot.jake Connor what a player love watching this guy play !

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