Costin puts dent in Hull's play-off hopes

Huddersfield 22 - Hull 20
Click to follow
The Independent Online

Huddersfield ended a seven-match losing run as their 11 men grabbed two late tries in an stunning finish that dented Hull's play-off ambitions.

Huddersfield ended a seven-match losing run as their 11 men grabbed two late tries in an stunning finish that dented Hull's play-off ambitions.

Hull now face a battle to hold on to second spot in Super League after losing their third match in a row, but they looked to be on their way to victory when they led 20-10 with five minutes to play, with a one-man advantage.

But then Brandon Costin, who is to retire at the end of the season, ignited what had been a terrible match, getting over for one try, setting up James Evans for another and kicking both goals to seal an unforgettable win.

His coach, Jon Sharp, called Costin "the best player this club has had for 40 years" and admitted that he would be impossible to replace. "It was an enormous effort," he said, "to come back with two tries in the last five minutes and it shows how hard all the players worked for each other."

Hull's Shaun McRae was less impressed with his faltering side. "It was as poor a performance as any I've ever seen from a team I've been involved with," he said, accusing his players of "a lack of courage, and stupidity".

Hull looked off-colour from the start, although they took a four-point lead with two penalties from Paul Cooke.

After 27 minutes, Huddersfield drew level through Marcus St Hilaire, before a conversion and a penalty from Costin put them in the lead.

The weakness of the Giants' game, as it has often been, was their tendency to concede penalties. They were at it again at the end of the first half, conceding possession, from which Garreth Carvell crossed to put Hull level.

An exchange of penalties at the start of the second half kept it tight until a 40-20 kick from Jason Smith, who later went off with a recurrence of his shoulder injury, gave Hull the platform to set up Paul King for a try.

The next try they conceded, three minutes later, was self-inflicted, Stuart Donlan losing the ball and Richard Whiting throwing a dummy to stroll over.

Despite being reduced to 11 men by the sin-binning of Jim Gannon and Paul March, along with Hull's Richard Horne after an outbreak of hostilities, Huddersfield came roaring back at the death.

The one-man disadvantage should have been the end of them and of any hopes of finishing in the top six, but Costin had other ideas.

Huddersfield: Reilly, Donlan, Evans, Costin, St Hilaire, Gene, March, Fleary, Penkywicz, Gannon, P Smith, Bailey, Jones. Substitutes used: O'Hare, Nero, Grayshon, White.

Hull: Briscoe, Best, Whiting, Yeaman, Barnett jnr, Cooke, R Horne, Dowes, Swain, King, McMenemy, McNicholas, J Smith. Substitutes used: G Horne, Carvell, Fletcher, Scruton.

Referee: I Smith (Oldham).

Comments