Hull FC showed very encouraging signs in derby defeat, insists Lee Radford

Hull FC coach Lee Radford said he was over the moon with his side’s effort in their defeat to Hull KR and insists there were positives to take from the game.

The Black and Whites lost 18-16 to the Rovers at the KCOM Craven Park on Friday night in the opening round of the 2019 Super League season.

FC were 16-14 ahead until Jimmy Keinhorst scored with just six seconds of the match remaining to snatch the points, and Radford was quite pleased with his side’s display.

He said: “There were very encouraging signs for us.

“I thought we dominated for large periods of the second half, obviously it’s disappointing to lose the game but I’ve had worse starts to the year than that.

“I can’t fault their effort and I wouldn’t have changed that for the world. Jake [Connor] is back next week, and we will get a bit of finesse back there, but if we can carry on turning up with that attitude then I will be over the moon.

“I felt we were really dominant in the second half but didn’t come up with enough down their end of the field. I thought we had done enough in the last set, but it was unfortunate for the way it turned out.”

Radford also revealed he is a huge advocate of having derby matches to kick off the new beginnings of Super League.

He added: “It’s been a great start to the season for Super League.

“I watched the first derby [St Helens v Wigan] which was fantastic, and tonight was fantastic, so it is onwards and upwards for Super League.”