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Ahead of Harlequins RL Good Friday fixture against Hull FC, Head Coach Brian Mc Dermott has every reason to feel optimistic about his team’s prospects on the back of a very good trip to France. McDermott commented: “A trip abroad is not always just about what takes place on the field.”
“We handled it all very well, the hotel arrangements, the travel, and game day. As a result we have arrived back fresh and we are very much looking forward to our contest with Hull.”
With just the one injury to forward Jonny Grayshon (hamstring), McDermott has close to a full strength squad to choose from: “We are able to achieve consistency with team selection and that can only be a good thing.”
Saturday's fourth round Challenge Cup win in France could be a sign of things to come at the Twickenham Stoop. Last season after Quins' victory against French opposition in the fourth round of the Cup, things picked up significantly for Quins RL at home. Having lost a handful of Super League games on the trot, Quins then defeated Toulouse 48-6 at the Twickenham Stoop. It was their first home win of the season.
Coming into this Easter Weekend, Quins are yet to win at home, having beaten Pia 64-8 in the fourth round of the Cup on Saturday.
Last year's win at the entry stage of the Cup turned Quins' home form around; it was the first of ten victories at home in the team's next twelve games! The team also gained maximum points over the Easter weekend with victories over Catalans Dragons on Good Friday and Wigan on Easter Monday.
If history is to repeat, the forecast for Friday looks pretty good, and there could well be more good fortune just around the corner.
Quins' most recent game against the black and whites saw Brian McDermott's men bring to an end an amazing thirteen-match winning run with an 18-16 victory. It was McDermott's first match in charge at the Twickenham Stoop.
The history books will also show the very first victory for the Harlequins Rugby League club came at the KC Stadium against Hull FC on Friday 3rd March 2006. Quins won 10-6.
The next visit was not so fruitful. Quins' 30-16 loss in round seventeen formed part of Hull's 13 game winning run, although Quins RL finished the 2006 season one up on the beaten engage Super League Grand Finalists.
Harlequins RL v Hull FC, 3pm Friday 6th April, Twickenham Stoop
Harlequins RL 20: Gafa, Heckenberg, Hill, Hopkins, McCarthy-Scarsbrook, McLinden, Melling, Mills, Orr, Paul, Purdham, Randall, Rinaldi, A. Smith, T. Smith, Sykes, Temata, Tootill, Villasanti, Wells.
Hull FC 20: Briscoe, Domic, Dowes, Godwin, Hall, G. Horne, R. Horne, King, Maiava, Manu, McMenemy, Raynor, Radford, Sing, Swain, Tony, Washbrook, Wheeldon, Whiting, Yeaman.
Referee: I Smith