Hull FC 28 Catalans Dragons 26: Airlie Birds coach Lee Radford celebrates new deal with victory

Fetuli Talanoa.
Fetuli Talanoa.
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Lee Radford and Hull celebrated the coach’s new three-year deal by ending Catalans Dragons’ seven-game winning run, but only just.

Radford’s extension was announced on the morning of this clash and his side continued the form that has led to it by running out 28-26 winners.

Clearly buoyed by a positive week – three players have also penned new deals – Hull were quick out of the blocks and ahead inside five minutes, a brilliant right-to-left move finished by Fetuli Talanoa.

Everything was going the home side’s way and a second try duly followed, Liam Watts and Frank Pritchard making strides through the Catalans defence and feeding Curtis Naughton.

Louis Anderson led a Catalans response with a close-range finish, but Sika Manu restored Hull’s two-try lead after taking in a pass from Danny Houghton. Marc Sneyd tagged on a penalty to get Hull out to 20-6 and they looked in command, only for Pat Richards to reel them in before the break.

His first try was a 26th-minute effort from a Tony Gigot ball and then he went in again off a pass from Richie Myler, although his failure to convert both from wide out left his side trailing by six.

Hull were fortunate to see Catalans waste an overlap as the second half warmed up, as Richards would have been in for a hat-trick had Vincent Duport’s pass been on-point.

The second half had been largely about Catalans but that changed as Remi Casty was sin-binned for one team offence too many and, before he had even got off the field, Scott Taylor went in to extend Hull’s lead.

Catalans would not go away entirely, though, and Jason Baitieri’s try and Richards’s goal got them to within six points.

Hull were on the rack but Casty released all the pressure with a late hit on Leon Pryce, while another penalty allowed Sneyd to edge Hull eight clear.

That was wiped down to two with eight minutes left as Eloi Pelissier caught the home defence napping and sped in from an offload, with Richards converting.

Catalans thought they had a chance to nick it too, Talanoa appearing to knock on as he tried an intercept 20 metres from his own line but referee Ben Thaler gave the decision the other way.

Hull: Shaul, Naughton, Fonua, Yeaman, Talanoa, Pryce, Sneyd, Taylor, Houghton, Watts, Manu, Pritchard, Washbrook. Substitutes: Green, Thompson, Hadley, Bowden.

Catalans Dragons: Gigot, Broughton, Horo, Duport, Richards, Bosc, Myler, Casty, Da Costa, Mason, Stewart, Anderson, Baitieri. Substitutes: Bousquet, Pelissier, Mounis, Maria.

Referee: B Thaler (RFL).