So………..What the hell do you make of all that then???
As long suffering FC fans, so often reduced to having to ‘make do’, we have just witnessed a weekend when we beat rovers with an unprecedented late comeback in their own back yard before going on to ‘sack’ the undefeated league leaders three days later at the KC, with a team that included 11 local born players. Is that the stuff that dreams are made of? Well, I think quite possibly it is!!!
First there was the Derby!
“With 20 minutes to go I still believed we could get the victory.” said ‘Cryogenically enhanced’ weekend hero Kirk Yeaman, in the wake of a quite amazing afternoon, although I have to say that, with 20 minutes to go, you were probably on your own there Kirk!! In the end however, for every person out there who has any feeling at all for the enigma that is Hull FC and who was, on Friday night, just basking in the afterglow of that famous win, this Easter weekend was only really ever going to be about that amazing 20 minutes….wasn’t it??
But, then came Monday!
And perhaps the most exciting game so far at the KC his season. It was the game when Lee Radford’s claims that our squad really does have strength in depth came to fruition in quite spectacular fashion! It was also an afternoon when everyone who attended was just so, so proud and indeed when all those who had knocked Radford, Yeamo, Houghton, Sneyd and Washy in the past, had to eat just a little humble pie.
After three straight wins in the league we have now picked up ten points from our opening eight games. That’s a six-point increase on where we were 8 games in last year and has to be an improvement! Now we need to show that our elevated position in the league is not just a flash in the pan and that starts on Friday, but for now at least……..
What a bloody marvellous Easter that was!!!!!
Well it wasn’t pretty was it? But I guess last Friday was all about the result and we got two precious points and….. that’s about it really.
However, whichever way you look at it a win’s a win and after three defeats including that disaster at Widnes, at least we had the resilience and determination to succeed, something that manifest itself in some excellent goal line defence against what can only be called an adequate but hard working Wakefield outfit. We were in fact pinned on our own line for three sets of six on two separate occurrences in the second half, as the circus like antics of ‘the ringmaster’ Mr Child bewildered us all.
There was evidence of a distinct lack of confidence, infused with a whiff of nervous tension, as we went back in our shells and it was a case of safety first and many sets that were just five drives and a kick. It all made for poor fare for the spectator and any fleeting attempts at the expansive play we saw a few weeks ago were invariably pretty disorganised and disjointed.
But, we were desperate for a couple of points and in our defence we never really looked like we’d fail to get them. However I honestly think that a Wakefield side that looks doomed to the middle eight already, was hardly a big test. I have also to say that in my opinion, on the night; most other Super League Clubs would possibly have beaten us. But we beat Wakefield, we did enough and at least we move onto the Derby with a win and a bit of confidence, although we’ll have to be a lot better next Friday!
‘Never in my reign have we given in like we did tonight – it’s categorically the worst performance since I’ve been here as a player or coach!” so said a beleaguered Lee Radford after the game, as even his own players couldn’t speak about it in front of him. But, who could argue with his assertion because…….
…it was certainly a bit of a shambles.
Perhaps before I go any further, I guess I should apologise in advance, because this week’s offering wasn’t written on Sunday or early on Monday like some are, but was mostly put together in ‘real time’ after I got home in the early hours of Friday morning; and I wasn’t very happy! I get criticised for being negative at times, but after that performance I make no excuses at all for putting in here just what I think as I sit here at home at 3-00am bashing out my thoughts on my lap top and trying to capture my mood after arriving home from Widnes. All I can do in these circumstances is just try to reflect the ‘tone’ of the moment!
As performances go, that one was totally devoid of any sort of fight, in fact I agree with Lee, because I have seen few of our games in recent years that could be classed as worse. It wasn’t just a run of the mill defeat, but more a real game changer for the fans aspirations! Sure we’re only 5 games in, but the way we capitulated was quite unprecedented and made for one of the worst performances I can remember. For me it was reminiscent in many way of that Play-off defeat at Huddersfield a few years ago when we got pasted and the players looked as if they just couldn’t be arsed.
In Codgers Corner later in the Diary I have taken the opportunity to feature a game that should remind us all as to what those long lost qualities of dying for the badge, playing for the fans and valuing the shirt are all about, because after Thursday many FC fans could be forgiven, had they forgotten!!
I bet after that performance Adam was apoplectic, James Webster was quietly smiling to himself, James Rule was laughing his hat off and Lee Radford was looking for a locksmith!!
As fans there is a defining line between being just disappointed and being bloody heartbroken and Friday’s game pushed me over that particular rubicon for the first time this season.
By the final hooter I was totally gutted. Not so much because we had lost, that’s disappointing, but it was the way by which we snatched defeat from the jaws of victory…again, that really got to me!
After the Salford game I strode out of the KC with a spring in my step, after Castleford I left feeling that things were still positive and hope was still everywhere, but last Friday I was back to trudging out of the game, ‘kicking cans’, with my spirits crushed. It was another one where we suffered last minute defeat in a game in which we stuttered and spluttered, were over confident with the ball and at times absolutely shocking in defence and yet where we came within a whisker of winning. We actually fought tooth and nail to get back into things and to a position from which we should have at least got a point.
I guess had we been blown away by a dour yet efficient Wigan outfit that looked at times in total command, then that would have been that, it would be back to square one and strangely I guess pretty acceptable, but it’s almost a case these days that Hull FC just want to compound our distress. We fought back in quite amazing fashion to take the lead, found ourselves level, then went behind by a drop goal, before we levelled again with a great one pointer ourselves, to finally and absolutely gift the opposition the game in the last minute. If bloody Carlsberg did soul destroying then Hull FC would, at present, be right up there up with the best of em!!
In the cold light of day the fact is that what, in the end, turned out to be yet another exciting and entertaining game, saw us once again eventually wrecked on the rocks of some shocking goal line defence, an abysmal referee and another last minute brain fart! After just four games and two close defeats, it’s all still way better than last year and I had I suppose, no right to feel so depressed so early in the campaign, but whatever I was SUPPOSED to feel on Friday, walking back to the car I was gutted!