Hull FC winger Fetuli Talanoa has targeted returning to fitness in time to fire their Old Trafford bid after agreeing a one-year contract extension with the club.
The former Tongan international, 30, is in his fifth season with the Challenge Cup holders but will now stay until the end of 2019, at least.
He has been out of action since mid-May due to an injury suffered in the Cup win at Featherstone Rovers.
However, Talanoa – such a strong carrier out of back field – had already scored 12 tries in just 16 games this term to prove his worth yet again.
The ex-South Sydney star has totalled 55 tries in his Black and Whites career and now hopes to reach the Grand Final having helped them win the last two Challenge Cup finals at Wembley.
Talanoa – who also has an option to extend into 2020 – said: “I knew I needed to put in some good performances at the start of this year to earn a new deal and I’m glad I did that.
“I’m really happy in the city. Me and my family have settled here really well and I love playing for the club.
“I’ve played with a really special group of guys during my time here. So in the end it was a pretty easy decision.
“It was a really unfortunate time to get the injury, but I’m really focused on my recovery at the moment.
“We need to keep picking up the wins, especially at home. So hopefully when I return we’re in a really good position going into the Super 8s.
“It was a great two years to hold the Challenge Cup. Unfortunately, that wasn’t to be this year but that now means we can concentrate on getting to Old Trafford and hopefully add some silverware to our collection.”
The Aucklander – who initially quit the sport after leaving Souths – was one of Lee Radford’s first signings.
Ahead of tomorrow’s game against visiting Wigan Warriors, the coach admitted: “I’m over the moon to have Fetuli tied down.
“He’s a big part of the culture we have here and been a real revelation since joining in 2014.
“He was a left-field signing but has proved to be a fantastic addition over the last few years.
“He had a long time out of the game before he joined, and I think that made him appreciate the sport; that’s played a role in showing the commitment he does on and off the field.”
Captain Danny Houghton and stand-off Albert Kelly return from injury against Wigan.