Dragons eliminated from the Cup


Hull FC (28) 62

: Steve Michaels 3, Josh Griffin, Mahe Fonua, Liam Watts, Scott Taylor, Jansin Turgut, Jordan Thompson, Jamie Shaul 2, Jake Connor
: Marc Sneyd 2, Jake Connor 5

Catalans Dragons (0) 0
T :
G :


Hull began their defence of the Ladbrokes Challenge Cup in convincing fashion with a 12-try rout of a weakened Catalans Dragons side at the KCOM Stadium.

Australian winger Steve Michaels scored a hat-trick of tries as the Black and Whites cruised to a 62-0 sixth-round victory that would have been even more emphatic but for a rare off-day by goalkicking half-back Marc Sneyd, who succeeded with just two of his seven attempts.

The Catalans were 16-14 winners in Super League at the KCOM Stadium back in February but fielded just seven players from that game as coach Laurent Frayssinous demonstrated where his priorities lie after a run of three straight league defeats left them perilously close to the bottom four.

In the absence of 12 senior players, Fraysinnous handed senior debuts to reserves Arthur Romano and Matthieu Khedimi, while Hull coach Lee Radford was able to field 11 members of his cup-winning team, including prop Josh Bowden on his 100th appearance for the club.

Despite the slippery conditions, it was largely one-way traffic in front of a crowd of 6,470 - under half the attendance from February's league game - from the moment full-back Jamie Shaul got Michaels over at the corner for his first try with just 80 seconds on the clock.

The ever-dangerous Shaul combined with second rower Mark Minichiello to get Griffin over for his side's second try five minutes later and also supplied the final pass to get winger Mahe Fonua in at the corner on 23 minutes.

The visitors had plenty of possession in the opening quarter but without being able to prise open the Hull defence and they suffered a major blow when scrum-half Richie Myler limped off after 25 minutes.

France international forward Julian Bousquet followed Myler to the sidelines before half-time while Hull had back-row forwards Danny Washbrook and Jordan Thompson playing in the threequarter line after losing Griffin and Fonua to injury in the first half.

There was less disruption to the Hull pack, however, and they laid the platform for the holders to build a commanding lead.

Front rowers Scott Taylor, back from being on England duty in Sydney, and Liam Watts both went over for tries following splendid work from Danny Houghton and Minichiello while Michaels' took Jansin Turgut's pass to grab his second.

Sneyd managed just two conversions but Hull's 28-0 interval lead was commanding enough and they were out of sight within 10 minutes of the restart.

Turgut, taking over from Washbrook at left centre, came up with a delightful flick pass that enabled Michaels to complete his hat-trick in acrobatic style before deservedly slicing through a back-pedalling Catalans defence for a deserved try of his own.

With Sneyd missing for the fifth time, Jake Connor took over the goalkicking duties and converted Turgut's try, as well as one from wide out by Thompson, who profited from a superb pass out of the tackle by Albert Kelly.

Kelly then demonstrated his array of talent to carve out two late tries for Shaul and Connor claimed one himself in addition to kicking five goals from as many attempts to wrap up the scoring. 



Dragons : Albert, Duport, Thornley, Romano, Yaha, Walsh, Myler, Moa, Da Costa, Casty, Bousquet, Perez, Belmas
Subs: Simon, Séguier, Margalet, Khedimi

Hull FC : Shaul, Fonua, Connor, Griffin, Michaels, Kelly, Sneyd, Taylor, Houghton, Watts, Turgut, Minichiello, Green
Subs: Bowden, Thompson, Fash, Washbrook

Referee: Ben Thaler