PA Sport

Gentle praises defensive dominance

Gentle praises defensive dominance
By PA Sport

17/09/2012 at 15:12Updated 17/09/2012 at 21:19

Hull coach Peter Gentle paid tribute to his side's defensive efforts following their nine-try hammering of Huddersfield in the last of the opening Super League play-off ties, although he was angered by their late lapses.

Wingmen Tom Briscoe and Jamie Foster each scored two tries as Gentle's side beat a disappointing Giants 46-10 to earn a trip to Warrington in Saturday's preliminary semi-final.

"We gave ourselves a good chance with our defence," Gentle said. "Our forwards aimed up to a lot bigger pack and really took it to them from the start. The blokes who came off the bench kicked off where the others left off so it was a great team effort."

He added: "If you look at St Helens and Wigan who both won at the weekend, they were very aggressive in their defence. We have spoken all week about the fact that the best defensive side will win the competition. Wigan and St Helens set the benchmark and I think we matched it."

Hull were coasting at 34-0 before Huddersfield struck back to score consolation tries through prop Eorl Crabtree and full-back Scott Grix, much to the dismay of their coach.

"We dropped our guard and I'm a bit disappointed with that," Gentle added. "They were two soft tries. There are still areas to work on. I'm not happy with our last-play options."

Gentle is confident of having points machine Foster available for their trip the Halliwell Jones Stadium. Foster, who is playing on a week-to-week loan from St Helens, scored two tries and kicked seven goals for a personal haul of 22 points which took his tally to 106 in just eight matches.

"I think at the moment we are still okay," said Gentle. "I think the decision will be made whether we come up against them at some stage and it depends on how they go with injuries. We're at their beck and call at the moment but they've been very good about it. He doesn't miss too many (goal attempts) and he's fitting in nicely."

While Hull retain hopes of reaching their second Grand Final, Huddersfield's season came crashing to a halt in depressing fashion and coach Paul Anderson admits the club will now need to take stock of their situation after a disappointing second half of the season.

"We just didn't perform," Anderson said. "The most physical, the most aggressive and the best team won. Sometimes we just stood there and watched them. We are a good team. We need to look at what we are doing, need to look at the roster and what we have to do to make the top four. Recruitment will now kick in."