Outcast Miller handed chance to earn reprieve

Hull FC's Lee Radford.
Hull FC's Lee Radford.
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AUSTRALIAN scrum-half Jacob Miller has been brought in from the cold by Lee Radford as the Hull FC coach bids to kick-start his side’s ailing campaign.

Miller, the expensive NRL import signed from Wests Tigers mid-season last year by previous coach Peter Gentle, has yet to feature at all this term.

But after last week’s dreadful 7-0 home loss to Widnes Vikings, and with Hull having won just once since the opening night against Catalan Dragons, Radford has given the youngster a chance versus Salford Red Devils tonight.

“Jacob will start,” he said about the 21-year-old. “It is a big challenge for him. The drums have been beating for me to give him a game and it’s now on his toes so we’ll see what he’s got.

“He hasn’t played so far because of his performances in the friendly games. He’s knuckled down in training, he’s really knuckled down this week and now we’ll see what he’s about.”

Asked whether he thought Miller – who has been overlooked with Richard Horne, Jordan Rankin and Aaron Heremaia all previously preferred – would take his chance, Radford said: “I anticipated three or four blokes would take their chance last week.

“Unfortunately they didn’t, so I’ve stopped anticipating.”

It is unclear yet which of that half-back triumvirate will make way for Miller but Radford is clearly still irked by the lame manner of the Widnes debacle.

“I think everyone could see how disappointed I was after Sunday’s performance,” he said.

“I publicly slated a few players and it needed doing. We need to understand as an organisation, that performance was not acceptable. We have had a few disappointed blokes this week after being told they won’t be playing, but hopefully they’ll respond in the right way. Truth be known if I had a few more available there would be more changes this week, but I don’t want to be making so many.”

Radford has 10 players unavailable through injury or bans for the visit of ambitious Salford.

“They’ve got Marwan’s millions and he’s spent some money assembling that squad so it will be tough for us,” he added. “But we went in last Sunday and never performed, so this week, as underdogs, we’ll see what mentality change that brings.”