Leigh 22-64 Hull FC: Andre Savelio scores hat-trick away at struggling Centurions

Andre Savelio scored a hat-trick as a Jake Connor-inspired Hull FC crushed rock-bottom Leigh Centurions 64-22 at Leigh Sports Village.

Winger Adam Swift also touched down twice as Brett Hodgson’s side ran in 12 tries to inflict an embarrassing defeat on their outclassed hosts.

After encouraging displays in interim coach Kurt Haggerty’s previous two matches, Leigh were confident of ending a 10-game losing streak.

Instead, with full-back Connor in imperious form, Hull dominated after trailing 6-4 after five minutes.

READ: Leigh caretaker boss Kurt Haggerty declares his head coaching ambitions

Salford Red Devils’ 9-8 success at Huddersfield Giants on Friday night made victory even more imperative for the home side, who are now adrift by four points.

But by half-time any hopes of that elusive first win had evaporated.

It certainly did not bode well for the Centurions when Ben Reynolds dropped Marc Sneyd’s kick-off and classy Connor scored from the resulting set.

And there was false expectation when James Bell accepted Liam Hood’s offload to cross after five minutes.

Ryan Brierley in action for Leigh

Ryan Brierley converted to nudge Leigh in front for the first of his 14 points, but  that was as good as it got for the home side, who were carved open with virtually every Hull attack.

Had Sneyd not mislaid his kicking boots, the visitors’ interval advantage would have been even greater.

Third in Super League’s 2021 goal-kicking charts, he missed his first four conversion attempts as Swift, Manu Ma’u and Bureta Faraimo followed Connor over the line.

That prompted ironic cheers from FC’s 400-strong following when Sneyd added the extras to Mahe Fonua’s 27th-minute score.

Hull’s injury woes only allowed Hodgson to name an 18-man squad to protect a 33-year unbeaten record on Leigh soil.

The Black and Whites need not have worried as they continued to score at will to consolidate fifth place in the table.

When Joe Mellor knocked on near the posts, Hull turned defence into attack and Swift raced 70 metres for his second of the afternoon.

Second row Savelio scored his first try before the interval hooter to pile on the misery for the home crowd, whose number included former boss John Duffy.

And there was no let-up from Hull after the restart as Connor, overlooked in Shaun Wane’s England squad, arrowed away from home cover to set-up a deserved try for impressive centre Connor Wynne.

Hull FC’s Connor Wynne touches down under the posts

Reynolds briefly lifted the siege with Leigh’s second try after 45 minutes but there was never a sniff of a comeback.

Youngster Jack Brown finished off another flowing attack for a rare try after 53 minutes before Savelio notched his second as the rout continued.

Brierley’s flashing footwork produced a solo score, only for Chris Satae and then Savelio – with his hat-trick try after 69 minutes – to further turn the screw.

Brierley proved Leigh’s only success, grabbing his 150th try for the club two minutes from time to move joint third on Centurions’ all-time list.

Leigh: Brierley; Mullen, Hellewell, Thornley, Sa’u; Mellor, Reynolds; Mason, Hood, Ioane, Gee, McCarthy, Bell. Subs: Rusell, Wildie, Peteru, Peats.

Tries: Bell, Reynolds, Brierley 2 Goals: Brierley 3

Hull FC: Connor; Faraimo, Fonua, Wynne, Swift; Reynolds, Sneyd; Sao, Houghton, Satae, Savelio, Ma’u, Lane. Subs: Brown, Fash, Johnstone, Vulikijapani.

Tries: Connor, Swift 2, Ma’u, Faraimo, Fonua, Savelio 3, Wynne, Brown, Satae Goals: Sneyd 8

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