Challenge Cup: Castleford Tigers 16-29 Hull FC – Hull book Wigan quarter-final

Castleford (6) 16
Tries: Griffin, Holmes, Mata’utia Goals: Richardson 2
Hull FC (18) 29
Tries: Tuimavave 2, Kelly, Naulago Goals: Connor 6 Drop-goal: Connor

Hull FC set up a Challenge Cup quarter-final tie against Wigan Warriors as they overcame Castleford Tigers at the Totally Wicked Stadium.

Carlos Tuimavave and Albert Kelly crossed for Hull either side of George Griffin’s first-half try.

Tuimavave scored from halfway on the hooter before Ratu Naulago raced in from 80 metres for Hull’s fourth try.

Cas immediately responded through Oli Holmes and Peter Mata’utia but Jake Connor’s kicking helped Hull through.

The match was originally scheduled for 22 August but called off after six Hull players tested positive for Covid-19.

They will now face Wigan in next weekend’s quarter-finals with the Wembley final set for 17 October, when it is hoped 20,000 fans will be allowed to attend.

With a shortened schedule because of the impact of the coronavirus pandemic, both sides came into the tie just three days after playing in Super League.

Cas narrowly lost to Warrington and Hull held off Wakefield in their Thursday night fixtures with both sides pushing hard for a play-off place, yet there was an impressive tempo to their cup encounter.

The lung-busting, long-range scores from Tuimavave and Naulago either side of the break were the standout moments as Hull beat the Tigers for the second season in a row at this stage of the competition.

Cas fought back in the second half and applied pressure thanks to Mata’utia’s try, which followed a huge Danny Richardson 40-20.

Hull could have wrapped up the win in style late on, but Josh Griffin’s pass was forward to Kelly, who limped to the sidelines with a hamstring injury in the only blot on the visitors’ day.

Hull FC interim boss Andy Last told BBC Sport:

“It was really tough to watch and I dread to think what it was like to play in. I want to pay credit to both sets of players.

“It was a monumental effort from both teams after Thursday night’s game and it’s unfortunate for Castleford they’ve come on the wrong side of the result.

“We had young guys play on Thursday and older guys play today and it’s a great achievement to be in the next round.”

Castleford boss Daryl Powell told BBC Sport:

“The boys have played on Thursday then played here on Sunday and anyone who knows rugby league will know that is a tough thing to do.

“I thought we were really courageous today especially around half-time which was really difficult having conceded two tries but there was nothing in the game outside of that.

“It’s been a really difficult season. To do what the players have had to do today is crazy. I understand the season and the way it is but we’re going to have to get some cotton wool out for the next week or so.”

Castleford: Olpherts, Mata’utia, Shenton, Feki, Richardson, Watts, McShane, Holmes, McMeeken, Griffin, Blair, Clare, O’Neill.

Interchanges: Millington, Milner, Hepi, Turner.

Hull: Shaul, Faraimo, Tuimavave, Griffin, Connor, Ma’u, Kelly, Cator, Johnstone, Fash, Lane, Ellis, Naulago.

Interchanges: Houghton, Satae, Sao, Fonua.

Referee: L. Moore.

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BBC Sport – Rugby League

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