Wakefield Trinity 16 Hull FC 26: Ratu Naulago impresses again as Hull heap misery on Wakefield

Hull FC's Ratu Naulago scores
Hull FC's Ratu Naulago scores
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Ratu Naulago continued his brilliant breakthrough season as he scored two more tries to lift Hull FC up to joint-second and leave woeful Wakefield Trinity still in the relegation mix.

The Fijian winger, who joined the Airlie Birds from the British Army in February having previously not played rugby league, was too hot to handle for the hosts who have now lost 10 of their last 11 Super League games.

Wakefield Trinity's Joe Arundel scores against his former club. (PIC: Jonathan Gawthorpe)

Wakefield Trinity's Joe Arundel scores against his former club. (PIC: Jonathan Gawthorpe)

Wakefield - who gave debuts to new signings Morgan Escare and Adam Tangata - had been 6-0 ahead courtesy of Ryan Hampshire’s 11th minute converted try.

But they had been error-prone and looked like a side that have now won just one of their last dozen games.

They remain just two points off bottom-place with four games remaining having lost their last five.

Hull, meanwhile, draw level with Warrington Wolves and had their own problems here, making a succession of mistakes themselves before finally finding some semblance of form taking control with a blistering spell of four tries in just 11 minutes.

Hull FC's Gareth Ellis takes on the Wakefield defence. (PIC: Jonathan Gawthorpe)

Hull FC's Gareth Ellis takes on the Wakefield defence. (PIC: Jonathan Gawthorpe)

They scored with their first real attack of note in the 19th minute, Marc Sneyd’s grubber rebounding off a post for Jake Connor to usher Buerta Faraimo over.

Sneyd slotted the first of his three kicks but they followed up with yet another error, Josh Griffin fumbling at the play-the-ball 30m from his own line, although the centre hotly contested the validity of the decision.

It mattered not; from the resulting scrum, Ryan Hampshire threw a hopeless pass on the first tackle that saw Carlos Tuimavave intercept and race 70m, the Hull centre seeing off the valiant chase of hooker Tyler Randell.

They swiftly added a third following Sneyd’s second 40/20 kick of the afternoon.

Following his first such effort, Masi Matongo - who started instead of Josh Bowden in a change to the teamsheet - fumbled on the very first tackle.

There was no such profligacy this time; Jake Connor was held up going for the line but, at the next play, Sneyd stepped over, benefitting from some of the shoddy Trinity defence that would return to haunt Chris Chester’s side time and time again.

Similarly, they switched off in the next set as Connor, sensing the opportunity, chose to pass on the last tackle 30m out, finding Tuimavave who put Naulago over untouched to suddenly leave them 20-6 ahead on the half-hour.

Wakefield endeavoured to get a foothold back in the game but their half was summed up when, with the interval hooter already sounded, Joe Arundel spilled Dave Fifita’s offload as they tried to keep the ball alive.

The hosts needed to score first in the second period but only managed to gift Hull yet another score in the 51st minute.

Escare, who had switched to full-back having started on the wing, this time gave away an intercept pass to Tuimavave when in prime attacking position.

The Kiwi was in no danger of going the length of the field and neither was Naulago after he offloaded to the Fijian.

Yet somehow a raft of defenders all fell off the Hull winger near centrefield as he was allowed to find some space; when that happens, people tend not to catch up.

Naulago duly romped home from 80m for his 13th try in just 20 games, Sneyd improving.

Granted, Wakefield had most of the better play thereafter, Arundel crossing three minutes later after Josh Griffin coughed up coming away from his own line.

Danny Brough hit a post with the conversion attempt while Sneyd was wide with a simple penalty.

Griffin did well to get back and haul in Ben Jones-Bishop as the Trinity winger managed to get clear but the home side did create extra tension when Jacob Miller added another try in the 73rd minute.

Brough narrowed the deficit further but there would be no great escape.

There was warm applause for Elliot Burton in the 15th minute, the lifelong Trinity fan who tragically passed away recently at the age of just 15.

Wakefield Trinity: Hampshire; Jones-Bishop, Lyne, Tupou, Escare; Miller, Brough; Tanginoa, Wood, Kopczak, Kirmond, Arundel, Batchelor. Substitutes: randell, Fifita, Tangata, Annakin.

Hull FC: Shaul; Faraimo, Griffin, Tuimavave, Naulago; Connor, Sneyd; Taylor, Houghton, Matongo, Lane, Minichiello, Ellis. Substitutes: Bowden, Fash, Washbrook, Brown.

Referee: Liam Moore (Wigan)