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Harrogate v Hull RUFC – preview

Hull travel to Harrogate this weekend to play For a place in the final of the Yorkshire Cup.
Hull will take on a side sitting in the league above them and at a venue where they narrowly lost the last time the sides met in a vital league two encounter a couple of years ago.
The two sides sit at different ends of their respective leagues. Hull have just missed out on promotion from National Three North, whereas Harrogate will be looking over their shoulder as they are just two points above the drop zone with three games still to be played in National League two .
Those considerations will doubtless be laid to one side at 3pm on Saturday as the prize is a place in the final of one of the oldest cup competitions in rugby.
Hull will be hoping that all their injury problems will be resolved as they look to field their strongest side. Second rower Stuart Nell will be hoping to rejoin the squad while props Stephen Quigley and Mike Jobling could be joined by Hardman and George Thornton as coach Gary Pearce ponders his best line up.
Hull’s back division has been functioning well in recent weeks and the last three games have seen the tries scored at regular intervals. However Hull will need to keep full concentration for eighty minutes as ball retention will be vital to build and maintain pressure on their experienced hosts.
Hull’s attractive running style is great to watch but it results from a good supply of first phase possession backed by accurate and clinical use of that possession.
Hull’s form suggests that have every chance of going further in the competition but they are once again playing a side in a league above them so they will need to show their opponents some respect.

Richard Gore

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