AFTER two steps forward in as many weeks, Friday could definitely be classed as a step back.

They arrived in East Yorkshire looking for a third victory in a row to solidify their progress under Steve Price. Despite a brief fightback in the second half, they never really got close.

As it has been since the beginning of the season, defence was not their downfall as they showed their willingness to fight for each other when the opposition were banging on the door.

However, this amount of defending was only necessary due to their continuing tendency to shoot themselves in the foot.

A penalty count of 6-1 in favour of the hosts in the first half meant the damage was done, especially with Marc Sneyd in ominous form with the boot.

Indeed, the opening points of the game came from a penalty given away by Toby King failing to play the ball properly. Such basic errors will be the ones that infuriate Price the most.

If anything, it is to their credit that they turned around for the second half only 10 points down.

Any hopes of getting back into the game were then thrown into further doubt when Dec Patton’s high, swinging arm connected with the head of Bureta Faraimo.

Ben Thaler took his time before producing the red card. In truth, Patton can have few complaints.

As Sneyd booted over another penalty and Carlos Tuimavave crossed for a second Hull try, it seemed as though The Wire’s priorities will have changed to limiting the damage.

Surprisingly, though, it had the opposite effect and an attack that was previously struggling to take advantage of the platform set by their forwards was suddenly on a bit of a roll.

Jack Hughes and Ryan Atkins crossed within three minutes of each other. The hosts were rattled and, very briefly, it was game on.

However, in freezing conditions, having a master game manager such as Sneyd is a Godsend and Hull were able to keep Warrington at arms’ length relatively comfortably.

The Wire even had the chance to play with even teams for the last few minutes after Liam Watts thought it wise to land a headbutt on Dom Crosby, but they could not land a further blow.

Their attack was being marshalled by its third half-back pairing of the season already and it showed. Wolves need some continuity in their spine, and they need it urgently.


. Ryan Atkins makes his 300th Super League appearance.

. Jack Hughes gets his first try of the 2018 season.

. Dec Patton is sent off for the first time in his career.


Super League, Round Five.

Friday, March 2, 2017.

Hull FC…21 Warrington Wolves…12.

Hull FC: Jamie Shaul; Bureta Faraimo, Carlos Tuimavave, Josh Griffin, Fetuli Talanoa; Jake Connor, Marc Sneyd; Scott Taylor, Danny Washbrook, Liam Watts, Mark Minichiello, Sika Manu, Dean Hadley. Subs: Josh Bowden, Jordan Abdull, Brad Fash, Jansin Turgut.

Wolves: Stefan Ratchford; Tom Lineham, Bryson Goodwin, Ryan Atkins, Mitch Brown; Declan Patton, Tyrone Roberts; Chris Hill, Daryl Clark, Mike Cooper, Ben Murdoch-Masila, Jack Hughes, Ben Westwood. Subs: Dom Crosby, Joe Philbin, Toby King, Sitaleki Akauola.

Scoring: Sneyd penalty, 20mins, 2-0; Faraimo try, 25mins, Sneyd goal, 8-0; Sneyd penalty, 40mins, 10-0; Sneyd penalty, 49mins, 12-0; Tuimavave try, 54mins, Sneyd goal, 18-0; Hughes try, 57mins, Ratchford goal, 18-6; Atkins try, 59mins, Ratchford goal, 18-12; Sneyd penalty, 71mins, 20-12; Sneyd drop goal, 80mins, 21-12.

Penalties: Hull FC 10 Wolves 8.

Referee: Ben Thaler.

Red cards: Patton, 48mins (high tackle); Watts, 73mins (headbutt).

Attendance: 10,053.

Man of the match (Guardian readers’ vote): Daryl Clark.