Hull step in to face Leeds after Castleford coronavirus outbreak

James Gordon

Hull will take on Leeds at Headingley on Thursday night, taking the place of Castleford, who were struggling with player availability due to a coronavirus outbreak.

Tigers coach Daryl Powell announced on Thursday that he had just 14 players available after three returned positive Covid-19 tests and a further six were stood down as part of track and trace protocols.

Hull had no fixture this week following the withdrawal of Toronto but had been asked to remain on standby.

Super League say the fixture between Hull and Leeds, initially scheduled for round 18, will be classed as a home game for the Black and Whites while the Leeds-Castleford game will be rearranged.

Powell had offered to test three of his 11 injured players on the morning of the match in an effort to get enough to field a team but Super League took the decision away from the club after Hull offered to take their place.

Super League executive chairman Robert Elstone said: “Super League clubs have responded exceptionally well to the challenges presented by Covid-19 and Hull FC have provided another example of this here.

“By stepping in to fulfil a fixture at such short notice they are a credit to the competition and we appreciate the level of inconvenience the club has faced in meeting this request.”