Former Great Britain international Karl Harrison believes that there could be a major shift of power in Hull from east to west when Engage Super League’s greatest rivals meet at Craven Park on Good Friday, April 2.
Harrison experienced the intensity of the Hull derby during his playing career at Hull FC and believes the black and whites have the form and the hunger that will see them avenge the league double they suffered at the hands of Hull KR last year.
“Hull FC will definitely want to win this game. There is no other match like the Hull derby in Rugby League; it’s certainly special,” said Harrison, who is now Head Coach at Batley Bulldogs. “On current form you can’t see a Hull FC loss. Last year’s results will have hurt them, without a shadow of a doubt.
“What makes the Hull derby such a fierce and intense game is the number of Hull-born players involved in the fixture. Hull is an isolated city right on the end of the M62 with Holland the next stop so the game is really blown up within the city.
“The whole of Hull talks about nothing else ahead of the game and there’s a lot of pressure on the players and coaching staff.”
The Airlie Birds will be keen to reverse the 18-14 and 24-18 defeats they suffered against their bitter rivals last season and regain bragging rights in the city.
Harrison added: ““Hull FC are a massive club and Richard Agar is a great young coach who has done a fantastic job putting together that team and he has recruited very well mixing young and experienced players.
“Hull KR won the bragging rights by winning both derbies last season. Hull FC see themselves as the big daddy of the city so it will have hurt them but the coach will certainly have learnt a lot about himself as a result.
“I still have a big soft spot for Hull FC and if you go on current form at the moment they should win but the form book can go out of the window at Hull derbies.”