Hull FC 26 Wakefield Trinity 23 - Coach Chris Chester proud of Trinity’s effort as they fall just short
Trailing 26-10 ahead with 10 minutes to go, Chris Chester’s tiring side looked destined for a fifth straight defeat especially missing a raft of regulars after being shut down for covid-related reasons last week.
However, Kelepi Tanginoa, the forceful Trinity second-row who excelled, scored a try either side of Hull full-back Connor Wynne’s yellow-card for a professional foul, and suddenly they were re-energised.
Crucially, Ryan Hampshire could not convert the latter in the 77th minute so Trinity trailed by three and had to go for glory.
It looked like they might get it when a gliding Hampshire ushered Joe Westerman through but, just as the former Hull loose forward looked to offload, Brad Fash vitally knocked the ball out of his grasp and Andy Last’s side held on.
Chester said: “I couldn’t be more proud of the players. We’re doing it tough at the minute - we have a lot of guys missing and it’s hurting us badly.
“Considering what they’ve had to go through over the last six or seven days, it’s been really challenging for everybody and they gave it a real good crack.”
Trinity gave debuts to youngsters Connor Bailey and Yusuf Aydin while there was also the welcome sight of winger Ben Jones-Bishop making his first appearance in 11 months after recovering from a blood clot for the second time in his career.
Hull opened through a Wynne try but Reece Lyne - back from suspension - made a great break to put Jones-Bishop clear.
Despite his long lay-off, the ex-Leeds Rhinos star looked like he had never been away, drawing Wynne perfectly, but Hampshire inexplicably dropped the pass with a certain try begging.
It looked especially costly when, in the next set, Adam Swift scored his 100th try in his 150th career game.
However, Trinity full-back Max Jowitt got over from close range and then added his second as his side score back-to-back tries, Lyne streaking clear again and Jones-Bishop this time opting for his full-back rather than Hampshire.
Hampshire improved both but Hull reclaimed the lead with Swift’s second try in the 37th minute.
Hampshire hit back with an impromptu drop-goal just before the break but his side trailed 14-13.
Hull scored first in the second period as Jake Connor hoisted a crossfield kick, Mahe Fonua rose high and Ande Savelio touched down. Connor converted the 55th minute effort but his side were let off when Tanginoa burst through to find Bailey in support, a desperate Faraimo managing to get a flailing hand in to deny the final pass.
Again, it was a vital intervention as, soon after, Connor’s hopeful grubber ricocheted off Lyne’s foot and landed perfectly in Lane’s grasp for the Hull second-row to claim his second try. Connor did the rest.
Then came his side’s wobble but they survived and Trinity’s winless run since the restart continues for another week.
Hull FC: Wynne; Swift, Fonua, Scott, Faraimo; Kelly, Connor; Bowden, Houghton, Fash, Savelio, Lane, Cator. Substitutes: Brown, Buchanan, Matongo, Satae.
Wakefield Trinity: Jowitt; Jones-Bishop, Lyne, Tupou, Senior; Bailey, Hampshire; Kopczak, Crowther, King, Pitts, Tanginoa, Westerman. Substitutes: J Wood, Green, Gwaze, Aydin.
Referee: Marcus Griffiths (Widnes)
Wakefield Trinity youngsters Daniel Barcoe - a 20-year-old hooker/half-back - and 19-year-old forward Harry Dodd - have signed for ambitious Championship side York City Knights for 2021.