The Dentists Diary – 404th

Well another fine mess and another morning that finds me dazed, disappointed and bemused! But at least Bradford lost and how sad is that statement!

A defeat at Wigan was pretty predictable with a depleted side, but the procession that led to 56-10 was hard to take. For me it’s the lack of any sort of energy or verve in our play that is of most concern. We were told back in March that, “It’s not how you start but how you finish” and teams like Wakefield, Rovers, Catalan and Salford are all stepping up their efforts as the end of the season approaches, but we seem to be just fading to a whimper, rather than ascending to a roar.

It was a depleted Wigan outfit that lacked a lot of the spark they have shown in past seasons, but in essence we never really threatened them much in a performance that even left the Wigan fans scratching their heads afterwards and asking just what has happened to the FC of old.

We’re all trying to have patience, all trying to ‘Understand’ and all trying to hold the line, but boy is it wearing thin. It was just too easy for a Wigan team that was at best a bit patchy and what a relief that was because for me, had they been at full throttle, then they would have topped 100! The ability to make the telling break has been missing for weeks, but now after it hasn’t been forthcoming, right across the team and indeed the terraces the enthusiasm is waning and fast!

As I say the fact that it was in the end a poor performance is mirrored and even worsened if you like, by the fact that for me, the general consensus was that Wigan were not that good themselves. However once again we started slowly and ponderously, they cottoned on and realised it was a ‘gimmee’ and simply blew us away. The problem for our Coach is that we made too many mistakes, lacked energy and belief in our ability and looked for the most part like rabbits caught in the headlights…we were in awe of Wigan! We simply didn’t compete and for all those stoic warriors who made the journey over the Pennines on a Friday night; that’s the disappointing bit. There were a smattering of boo’s at the end but in general the fans just filed away dejected and pretty downhearted with many just accepting what was with a sense of de je vu, what most expected anyway.

OK we were going to lose at Wigan no one in their right mind would say otherwise, yes we had injuries, yes we had a poor run behind us, but we could have at least tried to keep in touch with them, but once we were behind things simply got worse and worse! In fact I think both the supporters and indeed the players are losing faith in our ability to ‘fiddle’ a win from anywhere. In the Stands we simply don’t bel13ve anymore and perhaps that’s the player’s problem too.

Were becoming ‘Easy-beats’ and can’t get near the ‘Big’ Clubs, I mean to say since 28th July last season (I omit that win against a very young Wigan by one point) we haven’t beaten a top 4 team. In fact I guess it’s a mark of how far we have sunk when you consider that last season we got more points in the months of April and May than we have got in the whole 6 months of this campaign! Much of that demise has to be accredited to our inability to keep teams of any standing under any sort of pressure. On these occasions it seems that the only people who perform are the fans behind the posts, who never stop singing and I guess never stop hoping. However the players just capitulated again at Wigan and in the end like most of us succumbed to the inevitable.

In a vain effort to catch up in games we are releasing the ball too much in the tackle and then of course losing possession. Poor old Jack Logan, what a debut, even the number dropped off his shirt, he tried hard and made a good try for Talanoa, but it was a debut he shouldn’t have had to endure, because in such an intimidating game, we could have played Thompson or Crooks at centre, couldn’t we?

Watts had a good game and listening yesterday to a recording, I have to say he conducted himself very well in his after game interview because he didn’t try to hide anything, he sounded so, so upset and that’s all we can ask for, he’s ‘come of age’ of late for me! Abdull showed a few good signs and can put it down as part of his learning curve; Westerman had a real go again, while few others get any credit at all!

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Lee Radford openly admitted to being embarrassed afterwards and there is little doubt he shouldn’t be on his own!

The Club and Adam Pearson have to look closely at what is happening as we freewheel towards the end of the season with scarcely a win in sight. Wigan were poor themselves at times but they had loads of willing hands when anyone got their ‘nose’ through the line, while our ‘end of set’ plays are consistently poor and you can’t win games like that. Watching Taylor’s last try again says it all for me, because he took 4 over the line with him on his back. Radford was painfully honest afterwards when he said to the Hull Daily Mail, “There was some unbelievably average performances out there and after the start that we got and the enthusiasm we started with in the first 15 minutes, to watch us capitulate like that was very disappointing. I am not making any excuses. We did not perform to any sort of standard for a long enough period, and that’s the reason we got that score line put on us”. He had to say that, what else could he come out with after the players left him with no scope for excuses at all; he’s under extreme pressure but there was little else he could say!

There are a couple of mitigating circumstances as there is little doubt that we were, for the first time this season, really struggling for numbers something that was animated by the fact that a lot of the under19’s had to be called in for ‘Captains run’ last Thursday, because we couldn’t muster the numbers with so many players doubtful through injury. Yeamo, Sa and Horne all had minor knocks from which they didn’t recover while Ellis was given another week after a minor op on his back to relieve some pressure and all those should be back on Thursday. However I think it’s the attitude of certain players that has to change and not the personnel. I thought that for the first time too, Lee Radford sounded a bit desperate when he declared that the game was all about ‘not being bullied’ by Wigan as he faced up to what he perhaps believed even before we had played, was a pretty insurmountable hurdle.

I rarely quote from message boards but an entry on Saturday morning from my pal Mrs B just about said it all really. She posted, “You’re bang on about what happened at the 10-4 point. The huddle behind the posts at a point where we were still in the game was actual offensive to me as a supporter who’d travelled. For starters no one was speaking to each other. But worse, Logan was stood on the fringe of this group on his own. As a debutant with a massive ask in front of him, for which he was probably unprepared, for a senior player like Westerman or Whiting or Houghton not to be putting the arm round the shoulder and trying at least to rev the group up a bit made me really angry. The only person trying to do this in any way was Rankin. Absolutely appalling and an insult in terms of effort to those who went” There is little I can add to what is an indication as to how the most ardent of fans are feeling!

Now a lot of you won’t like this next bit and certainly won’t agree, but it’s just an opinion from an ordinary fan who appreciates that we all love Hull FC even if we all do it in different ways. I particularly love the great family that is the supporters and that’s why I guess, when I think about it, I keep this blog going in the first place. I guess in fact I’m pretty proud to be part of something that many clubs envy and look up to. So although OK in their place, in general I don’t have a lot of time for public protests against individuals. Therefore I have to say that seeing that ‘Radford Out’ Banner in the crowd at Wigan saddened me because quite frankly it helps absolutely no one.

That action, by some of our younger fans, achieves nothing and it’s not the way to do it, we might think it is and that sort of thing is certainly our prerogative as paying customers, but that sort of activity is invariably counter-productive. There are of course exceptions and ‘No to the merger’ banners such as we saw in the 90’s, the Johnny Whiteley masks and the more recent ‘City till we Die’ stuff against as they were, basic overarching principles, gain almost universal sympathy through media exposure, but public campaigns against individuals don’t! Displays of such dissent against one person show scant understanding of what supporting is all about and most importantly still, they probably really p*ss our owner off too!!

I speak to the owner on a regular basis and he is hurting as much as we all are and will no doubt do what he has to do when, as the piper who pays the tune, he feels the time is right. However guys, you won’t accelerate that situation by making the Club look cheap, in fact history proves it could just cheese any owner off and make him dig his heels in even more. That’s how owners usually react to that sort of thing and so for me, in sport, dirty washing being displayed in public is not in general a good idea. However as I said earlier that’s just my opinion but doesn’t mean that any fan has to roll over and just accept things, if you have a grievance, you pays your money and you’re entitled to your say.

So, write to our owner, grab him in the street for a word, ring the radio station, write to the paper, show your feelings to anyone at the Club you can grab and let them know how upset you are about anything, that’s your right as a fan and a customer. The ground swell of that sort of action certainly has more impact than a banner in the crowd. In fact when you stand back from everything the most impressionable thing fans at any given sports Club can do to make their feeling felt to the Board or owner is vote with their feet. We all dislike claims that players can oust Coaches but have a section of fans any more right to do it? Perhaps they have, I don’t know really.

We have a decent owner who is desperate to succeed and who is investing in the Club hand over fist and in that context waiving your mother’s bed sheets daubed with paint around in public under his nose is, for me, pretty counter-productive, particularly when you are demanding the head of a member of the Clubs staff. For me personally that sort of action achieves precious little except to harden the opinions of our owner, moves the fans further away from the Club and makes all the family of supporters look like pratts! You don’t have to agree but that’s how I see it anyway.

Now having said all that there is no doubt at all that the woes on the field and indeed the terraces, pale into insignificance after the news that broke at tea time on Friday. That night while in the Drum and Monkey I got a call at about 6-15 from Barry Edwards of the ex players, which confirmed news that has been, I’m afraid, coming for weeks. But, what a massively sad day it was when we all heard of the expected but untimely death of the great and now late Tony Dean. Tony died with his family around him in the Prince of Wales Hospice in Pontefract after a long battle with prostate cancer. You know few know it, but for months now, Barry, Chico and a host of ex players have been travelling over to the West Riding to visit Tony and only made their last trip a few days ago.

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On the Guildhall balcony 1982!!

Tony has battled long and hard against the odds just as he did on many occasions for the FC and what a top bloke he was.

That great game he played in the play off at Elland Road in 1982, when his starring performance alongside Dave Topliss, was a real high spot for me, as was his unending battle with Harkin for the number 7 spot throughout the early 1980’s. Then there was the great days at Hunslet before he signed, when he was renowned as the drop goal expert, his Hakka after we won the League in 83, his wrap round plays with Toppo, or him sitting in some local hostelry after the game amusing the rest of the team with his best pal Ronnie Wileman as they did their infamous Cannon and Ball impersonations. What a guy, what a legend and what a loss. He was a top player and a really nice guy who always had a word for everyone and of course a proper cheeky Charlie character of a half back!!

So another top bloke goes and another week sees another hero depart, what a shame for everyone who saw him play and what a loss for the whole RL family that loved him so much! RIP Tony Dean.

Well it always happens to me doesn’t it? In Last week’s Diary in an effort to implicate just about everyone at the Club in my abject disappointment with the showing at Salford, I cited our Coach for the first time this season. If you remember I said that for me, our inability to change the same old problems week in week out meant he wasn’t cutting it. So now, as you read this, just have a stab at who I bumped into in The Range on Clough Road last Monday afternoon; yeh, you guessed it…… Lee Radford, who was out buying air conditioning units for the video rooms at Chants Avenue.

He’s always approachable and so I grasped the nettle and told him what I had to say in the Diary and he took it OK (Well at least I got out without any broken limbs and with the few teeth I have still intact) He was objective too and said he understood how the fans must feel about the team and particularly about him. We had a good chat and he didn’t disagree with anything I said. He could have argued that it was the players fault, or that of injuries or bad luck or the bounce of the ball, or even the officials, but believe me he didn’t! He put his hand up and just said he was doing his very best to turn things round and reward the loyalty of the fans and Adam Pearson and that he knew the price of failure.

The thing is though after having that chat I still stand by what I said last week but I’ll tell you what, and it won’t be the first time I’ve said this, I will give him great credit for understanding exactly what it’s like being an FC fan in this City, he’s certainly on our wavelength because whatever his failings; he gets it, he really does! He’s struggling and whether he likes it or not reality dictates that as it’s him who is on the Bridge steering the ship that is heading for a 12th place finish, the buck stops with him and it’s not the guys ‘down in the engine room’ that will carry the can. Let me put on record as well that I have to say I think he gets that bit too and understands he will be out the door if things don’t improve.

It was great this week to hear from Ken Gentle and all the guy’s Down Under, who read this every week, have stayed firm friends and who are, as you can imagine, very interested in what is happening here at the FC!!! But closer to home I got it in the neck from Roger, Bill and a couple of other readers both inside and outside the Club for my appraisal of the Salford game and how dejected I felt after it. The spectrum was however very wide as I received comments which ranged from it being “..overtly negative” to “The most honest Diary you have ever written”. I even got one E mail that said “Can’t you just try and be positive for once!” For once, I liked that!! But, hey guys, I’m just an average fan and this weekly waffle isn’t a propaganda sheet for the Club, it’s just the thoughts of that ‘ordinary Joe’ who shells out 70 or 80 quid to go over to Lancashire to support the Club he loves and is a bit cheesed off with coming home always depressed and dejected. I stick by what I said because it was how I felt.

However while I at least have a vehicle with which to records my disposition others don’t, people are frustrated, they react in different ways and get involved with the general ‘knee jerking’ which is something that always happens at times like this. All around me people seem to be pontificating about walking away, tearing up their passes, it being the last straw and of having had enough; we all feel the pain but all react differently! However I can’t ‘walk’, although at times I wish I could, because when we’re so crap, it truly depresses me and subsequently therefore I share that depression in here!

I don’t decry those that walk, but know that although one or two have the courage of their convictions and will never return, the rest (the ‘weather house’ supporters, who are out when the sun is shining and in when its stormy) will come back when the fortunes of the Club show an upturn. AND upturn they will because history proves that is invariably the case. I remember the early 70’s with gates of around 1000 and those days certainly made me appreciate what followed in the 80’s because what goes round comes round. Then there were the Casey years before the Brian Smith realm and the Lloyd days before the takeover. However I say again, last week after Salford I felt as low as I could ever remember about my team. However, this week I am trying to unearth some positives although it aint an easy task at all. After Friday the future looks bloody bleak to me but in an effort to introduce a bit of light and shade to the scenario I’ve managed to scrape a few upbeat thoughts together and share them with you here.

I wondered on around Wednesday if I had been too engrossed in my despair and that perhaps, just perhaps things aren’t actually as bad as they look!!! (After Friday I think that perhaps they are worse!!) After last week’s rant that sounds bizarre I know, but when you look rationally at our results the team should have 3 more wins and with a good half-back pairing would probably have at least 4. If that was the case we’d be sat in 6th spot and all hailing the 2014 campaign as a positive season of building, especially with the likes of Lancaster and Abdull coming through and Hadley, Shaul, Cunningham, Green and Bowden progressing well. That’s the difference 8 points make; tight margins indeed. But were not in 6th and we’re not in the top 8 in fact we’re heading for a twelfth place finish!

It’s such a small shift between the dreams of that position and the reality of where we are now but it’s a bloody chasm between that perception of progress and the feeling of abject failure I’ve felt of late. Full back, the half’s and the hooker are the critical position for me so let’s look at them first. Shaul is doing well and making real progress. However I’m afraid I think that Horne, who has been a great servant, is now showing up to be perhaps past his best, Rankin has potential and is developing, but Miller doesn’t appear to me to be up to it. Houghton I feel has had a good season but because of our half back deficiencies, (as well as him often playing 80 minutes, running dummy half and tackling more than most other players in the game), we expect him to produce on the money passes all the time and that’s a big, big ask. However in the play making department Westerman has been a big plus!

As for the forwards well when you stand back a bit there is little doubt for me that by and large in most games getting from try line to try line isn’t a problem because in most matches the pack have handled themselves pretty well thus far. However, and it’s a big however, it’s the scoring tries and even more importantly the team’s inability to build pressure that has been the problem. Then there is the situations surrounding Lineham Crooks and Miller who are in and out , out on loan etc. what is actually going on there? I’ll watch with interest, as we all will, what happens at the end of the season, we need a clear out and a couple more class players in, but if that happens I think we’ll be better next year, although it’s going to be a tough end to this season. I expect a centre being signed quite soon but the jury is still out on the Coach as far as I am concerned, I was still willing to give him time, but that has to be running out! As fans however the season is gone now and so from here on in, we have nothing to lose but our sanity!

We need that clear out and those signings but, if we got them, had it been the old 14 team league next time around, then I think we have a chance in 2015. However with the new 12 team format and the group of death scenario which is planned for next year, success will, I feel, be twice as hard to achieve! So, after a week of licking my wounds, trying to find some positives and searching for crumbs of comfort there’s my objective view of things to come. I would include my un-objective view but this Diary isn’t big enough for that at present!! However all that said we have yet to get through a very tough end of season run in which may well require the long suffering fans to don their tin hats and perhaps even their blind folds and brown trousers!!!! I’ll be glad when it’s all over myself!

It must have been a massive day in the Tony Household last Wednesday as Motu passed out at Huddersfield University with a Master’s Degree in Business Administration which he gained with the help of a grant from the RL Charity Rugby League Cares. Motu, who was of course a hero of that glorious day in 2005, played on until 2012, but never fancied coaching and took up the position as Football Manager at Hull FC last year. Despite gaining the qualification, he insists his loyalties lie with Hull FC and everyone you speak to at the Club says he is doing a great job. He said, “I want to help build a club and a team at Hull that can win silverware. I might not play anymore, but I still hold that burning ambition to win.” So well done to Motu whose achievements must at the very least at least indicate to all player’s young and old, that there is life after rugby!

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Don’t know who Matthew Rhodes is, but here’s his chosen mode of transport! Well done mate, a great effort but don’t leave it unattended on Preston Road!!

Last week I mentioned the great things that are happening at the Wyke club this year and my thoughts were supported on Sunday when I was talking to Yeamo who said his lad had started his playing career there. Apparently Kirk and Lisa had been over to Cas on Saturday to watch the youngster play and they too were really impressed with the work that is going on at the Club. So well done to everyone down at Cropton Road, let’s hope the new Club House is soon up and running!
Next up big apologies to anyone who tried to access last week’s Diary after Wednesday, when sadly the Hull FC sub site got hacked again (not for the first time) and, I’m told, ‘it left the RL fans servers open to an e-mail spammer who then started sending out trash mails, which caused a few problems with the server hosts. The administrators therefore had little choice but to take the site down again to remove the vulnerability’. Well, that’s OK then, and all as clear as mud, however I’m pleased to add that no blame can be apportioned to my pal and mentor Joe at Black and whites or to yours truly on this occasion! Sorry, however for any inconvenience it may have caused!

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Nothing to do with him; blackandwhites co-ordinator and my trusted mentor Joe, was tearing his hair out and as bemused as the rest of us after another site hacking last week!

Well I had my say last week over the BBC’s action towards Craig Murdoch so I was so pleased on Friday to read that he has now got a job writing a regular column in the Hull Daily Mail from next Tuesday. I sent him a text that day to say how glad I was that he was staying in some capacity in the realms of local rugby league punditry and I wasn’t on my own there. The Doc’s sacking was met with a tirade of complaints from both FC and Dobbins fans on twitter and Facebook and the message boards were hot with complaints about his dismissal. It would have been a shame had we lost altogether the excellent rugby knowledge of a man about whom the Sports Editor of the Hull Daily Mail Mark Fewings said,”Over the last ten years, he has been BBC Radio Humberside’s best rugby league commentator by far and fans know they can trust his opinions. Although he is now involved in the game as an agent, I believe this only adds another string to his bow”. Who was it said Fewey never talks any sense? (I think it was me!) Well done Craig and good to have you back.

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“MMMMMM….Hull Daily Mail, you can literally smell the fish and chips!”

I noticed this week that you can buy a ticket to watch the Challenge Cup Final at Wembley this year for £13.50 which roughly equates to the price of the cheapest ticket at the great 1985 Cup Final!! Are we making the game too cheap to keep pace with other sports or is this just an indication that we are desperate to get fans into our games as across the sport in this country, gates are dropping at an alarming rate? The extra money Clubs will get next year with the new Sky deal might be making us complacent as a sport when it comes to bums on seats, but whether the powers that be like it or not as a live spectator sport, Rugby League is on its arse. They said Relegation would bring the fans flocking back…it hasn’t, they now say that 8x8x8 will do the same and on that one only time will tell, but somehow we have to get people back into the habit of attending the sport as a live spectacle. It’s a real conundrum which will be hard to solve. Next year at this time we will be just two games off the League of Death and I hope that gates are burgeoning and the ‘Ground Full’ signs are up at all the Stadiums….somehow however I doubt that they will be don’t you?

So, now to the nostalgia bit and despite it being the third re-run of this classic encounter here in Codgers Corner, in respect for the late great Tony Dean, I make no apologies for including my favourite game the little maestro played for Hull FC at Elland Road in 1982!

……after drawing at Wembley in such dramatic fashion and then getting drubbed by Widnes the previous weekend in the Premiership Final we were quite understandably a bit apprehensive as to the outcome of the replay. That was stress enough without being stuck in traffic for hours before we even got there! We had a few injuries from that Premiership Final too and Ronnie Wileman, the hero of our last Cup success in January, was replaced at hooker by veteran Tony Duke. However the biggest surprise was on the wing where Clive Sullivan, now ‘A’ team Player/Coach and another at the veteran stage of his career, replaced the injured Dane O’Hara. In addition to these enforced changes we found that Coach, Arthur Bunting had made a couple of tactical moves too. Terry Day was dropped to the bench and in came Tony Dean, for Kevin Harkin at scrum half, whilst Lee Crooks and another veteran Keith Tindall, started in place of Sammy Lloyd and Mick Crane.
The match kicked off with hundreds of people still arriving and numerous announcements being made for people to move to the front of the ‘Kop’ end. This action caused the crowd to spill onto the pitch on several occasions during the first half. Widnes kept faith with their full Wembley line up and were visibly surprised by the tenacity and spirit the patched up FC side displayed in the first few minutes of the game. On 20 minutes Widnes took the lead. Mick Burke kicked an audacious penalty goal from well inside his own half and as the ball flew through the posts the crowd, craning their necks to see the outcome, again tumbled onto the field behind the dead ball line.
As the half wore on and the crowd settled down, we started to exert some pressure which culminated in Hull producing two tries that will be seared into the memory of everyone who was there. They were actually that good that they will stay forever in this fans top ‘Desert Island’ tries of all time. Seven minutes from the break we were awarded a scrum inside the Widnes 25. This broke up and our adversary’s were penalised. Dean, ever alert to the situation took a quick tap behind the collapsed scrum and passed the ball to Norton. ‘Knocker’ quickly linked with Dave Topliss who found Gary Kemble on a superb inside run and he touched down before the Widnes’ forwards could free themselves from the remnants of the scrum.
The next try came just on half time and featured that famous, ‘Wrap round move’ that was, back then, a trademark of Dave Topliss. Tony Dean who was already winding up the Widnes halves, snatched the ball from a scrum and fed Leuluai, he passed to Topliss and then ran round him and gathered a return pass. This ‘switch’ move completely ‘wrong footed’ the Widnes defence and finished with Leuluai touching down without a hand being placed on him. I can still see it now and will no doubt be able to until the day I die. Young Lee Crooks converted the first try but hit the post with his second attempt as, to the surprise of every one, we went in 8-2 up at half time.
The second half started with the expected Widnes pressure which led to a successful penalty by Burke and when Wright overlapped on the wing they scored a try wide out although this time it was Burke’s turn to hit the post and forfeit the two points. We looked down and out and as fans we feared the worst, however a pulsating chorus of “Come on You Hulllaaarrr” circled the ground and the team responded brilliantly as great hands and a dummy from Norton sent ‘Toppo’ in from 15 yards out for another try. The capacity 41,711 crowd were then treated to some thrilling rugby as both sides tried to settle the game in their favour. Dean antagonised the Widnes forwards while Topliss tried everything he knew to get the line moving but in the end it was down to 18 year old Lee Crooks to fain a drop goal attempt and then dart over under the posts. The crowd behind him in the Kop went ‘bonkers’ and once again spilled over the fences and onto the pitch. Hull had won the Challenge Cup in one of the most exciting games I have ever seen.
For me the original game at Wembley was an anti climax, that I rarely re watch but over the years I have viewed that game at Elland Road over and over again and I still do particularly when I feel a bit down in the dumps. Despite traffic jams, a weakened team and chaos on the terraces we had witnessed one of Hull FC’s finest hours!
As Dave Topliss raised the Trophy aloft, the first Hull Captain to do it since the 1913/14 season, I was in pieces. It was then that I experienced that strange sensation of laughing whilst crying that only the sports fan (who thinks he has seen everything there is to see in his sport and who has so often been abused, goaded, broken hearted and disillusioned) really understands. It was a magical moment in a lifetime of following my Club, when just for a few hours I felt as though I was actually ‘touching the dream’. In the dressing room afterwards a BBC TV audience of around 5 million saw Tony Duke respond to the question, “How did it feel as the final whistle went”, by replying in his distinct Hull accent, “I bust out Roooring”. Didn’t we all Tony!

Last week I had a couple of texts about my picture of the ‘’late’…… Craig Sandercock and yes it was actually Dutch football star Arjen Robben but the similarity for me was uncanny! However one Warrington fan took things a step further this week and suggests that perhaps Robben is the product of a failed RL cloning experiment and a mix of Sandercock, Nathan Brown and Luke Walsh? Well, below you can see he has a point!

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So to Castleford at home on Thursday. We’re back on ‘tele’ and desperate for a win but you know I honestly think there’s little chance of us rolling them. I’d like to think we can and there is of course always a chance but, watching Cas week in week out on Sky they are just so well coached. When you analyse their team, and with no disrespect to the Cas fans, it looks like a junk yard for Rugby league failures! However that’s what a good coach can do because not only are they hungry and together but they are probably the most skillful attacking team in the league at present. Well that’s how they have looked of late when I’ve seen them anyway. They have always been classy Cas in my book and seem at present to be reclaiming that title with some style. If we are looking for any crumbs of comfort at all then you have to remember that just 10 months ago they were the team that finished third from bottom in the League and have since cobbled together a team of loanee’s and no hopers who have been galvanized into one of the most potent outfits in the game; so it can be done!

Thanks to everyone who had a go this week and to all those who sent their kind wishes as well, special mention to Ken and the lads in Aus. And to everyone who is at present touched by the tragic death of Tony Dean. My appreciation also goes as always to everyone who has taken the time to read this rubbish, you might not agree with it but believe me at times like this, it really does come from the heart! It’s a sad old state of affairs when you sit on a Sunday afternoon listening to Radio Leeds and cheering on Huddersfield whilst hoping Rovers win, so we don’t slip another place down the league. The Giants did the biz and (high court excepted) we’re safe but of course Rovers let us down, but weren’t it always so! So come on let’s take up the battle again on Thursday and make sure on the terraces at least we ain’t left wanting!!

Come on you HULLLLLAAAARRRRR!!!!!!!!!!!!

See you there on Thursday and Keep Believing

Faithfully Yours

Wilf

And finally….not rugby but it made me smile……
I have to say as far as a contradiction in terms is concerned this had the lot!! It’s a headline and picture from the Shropshire Star last Tuesday!!!

Gove removed, to be Tories’ TV face

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Like Michael perhaps we should all try to keep smiling!