Ageless veteran Mark Minichiello signs on again with Hull FC

Hull FC's Mark Minichiello. PICTURE: Allan McKenzie/SWpix.com
Hull FC's Mark Minichiello. PICTURE: Allan McKenzie/SWpix.com
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Mark Minichiello says the lure of a potential Grand Final win with Hull FC is one reason he signed a new deal that will see him play past his 37th birthday.

The Australian second-row has been one of the East Yorkshire club’s best overseas captures since joining from Gold Coast Titans four years ago.

He helped the Black and Whites secure back-to-back Challenge Cup successes last term and has done more than enough to warrant his new contract that runs until the end of 20109.

Minichiello, who captained Italy in last year’s World Cup, said: “I've already created some great memories here.

“But one of the key reasons I wanted to stay on was to try and help the side to a Grand Final appearance.

"I want to make sure I have the chance to achieve that; it's something that I've never done in my career but I'm still keen to achieve.

"I believe the club are in a good position to do that, and if not this year, hopefully we can achieve it next season.

"We have the people here to be able to do and that's why I wanted to go around again in 2019."

Fifth-placed Hull head to Huddersfield Giants tomorrow night looking to build some momentum and secure a top-four finish for the third season running.

On his decision not to end his career yet, Minichiello added: "Most players are retired at my age but personally, I'm still feeling really physically fit.

"I've always strived to look after myself and luckily it seems to have worked and I've bought a few more years at the back end of my career.

"The coaching staff and the conditioners have played a role in my fitness too. They manage us really well individually and specific programmes for each players."

He is now the eighth player this year to sign a contract extension with Hull.

Head coach Lee Radford admitted: "Mini's quality was never in doubt when he joined the club.

"He's been huge on and off the field since 2015.

"Mark is the most professional player I have ever come across and right up there with the likes of Craig Fitzgibbon and Richard Swain.

"He does some outlandish things to get those one percents to give us an advantage, like sleep patterns for example, but it works for him so credit to him.

“He's 36 and in great condition so he's doing something right."