Five places and ten points separated Wakefield Trinity and Hull FC coming into today’s game and with neither side able to improve their league positions with a win, they were both looking for the points for very different reasons.
Hull FC were looking to cement their place in the top six and pull further away from their Red and White neighbours in seventh spot while Wakefield were looking to make up two points on the Warrington Wolves ahead of them and put another two points between themselves and the relegation spot currently occupied by Toulouse Olympique XIII.
The home side had a six-point start on the handicap, Hull FC the favourites for the win.
Reece Lyne was helped off the field in the opening exchanges and looked unlikely to return, Wakefield in need of an early re-organisation.
Hull FC broke the deadlock on eight minutes when Adam Swift took a looping Jake Connor pass to score in the right-hand corner from five metres out. Luke Gale curled a great touchline conversion between the uprights for a 6-0 advantage.
FC got their second on the half hour after a couple of neat offloads from the forwards made the space for Connor to pass to Darnell McIntosh to cross in space down the left side. Gale added the extras for a 12-0 lead with FC managing to weather the Trinity storm.
A ten metre Gale penalty goal extended the lead to fourteen with seven minutes of the half remaining.
Wakefield were back in it on thirty-seven with Matty Ashurst freeing himself from a Jake Connor to tackle to dive over the line. Mason Lino added the conversion, and the Airlie Birds was back down to eight points.
Just before the interval Jay Pitts dropped the ball and with Hull back in possession, Swift chased down a Gale kick as the Wakefield defence failed to challenge for the ball with the winger collecting the ball to get his second of the game as the hooter sounded. Gale was unable to add the conversion, but the lead was back to two converted tries at the break.
The opening exchanges of the second half saw some massive hits, one of which ended up with Jake Connor receiving treatment for a leg injury and after trying to run it off for a couple of tackles he was taken off the field.
Neither side troubled the whitewash for the opening sixty-three minutes of the second half before David Fifita was held up over the line by a string FC defence as they prevented the try. Neither side were having the best second half, plenty of mistakes and ball going to ground.
On sixty-seven Corey Hall made the most of a McIntosh error as the Hull winger dropped the high ball. His opposing centre picked it up to go in for a simple try from ten metres. Lino added the conversion, the margin down to just six points to set up a grandstand finish.
With one-minute remaining Wakefield crossed with a Gaskell taking the pass to break the line and ground to put his side within two points of their visitors. Lino was able to add the conversion with seconds left on the clock. Golden point beckoned and it was no less than Wakefield deserved after an excellent second half performance.
FC decided to give it some air in the first period of golden point and with the ball moved to Luke Gale the Black & Whites half-back slid his kick wide of the posts.
A mistake from Arona gifted possession back to FC in a dangerous position and on the last tackle Gale hit an even worse attempted drop goal, barely getting the ball off the ground. Two chances spurned by the visitors.
With seconds left in the first half Wakefield finally got into the FC half and the ball found its way to Jacob Miller who slotted the ball between the uprights to win the game and take the points, a priceless win for Trinity and a devastating blow for the Black & Whites.
Wakefield never gave up, even after they went twelve behind and despite the crushing Hull try just before half time. They kept Hull scoreless in the second half as they toiled to get the twelve points that they needed to force golden point. Luke Gale wasted two decent opportunities, but Jacob Miller grabbed his first chance with both hands and stole the points from a shell-shocked FC. Willie Poching´s side back to winning ways and a further two points clear of the drop zone, now breathing down the neck of next Sunday´s opponents, the Warrington Wolves.
Wakefield Trinity: Gaskell (T), Murphy, Lyne, Hall (T), Lineham, Miller, Lino (3G), Fifita, Hood, Whitbread, Ashurst (T), Pitts, Batchelor. Subs: Tanginoa, Arona, Butler, Crowther.
Hull FC: Connor, McIntosh (T), Wynne, Scott, Swift (2T), Reynolds, Gale (3G), Evans, Houghton, Taylor, Lane, Ma´u, Brown. Subs: Fash, Griffin, Lovodua, Satae.
Full-Time: 18-18. Golden Point: 19-18.
Score Progression: 0-4, 0-6, 0-10, 0-12, 0-14, 4-4, 6-14, 6-18 : HT : 10-18, 12-18, 16-18, 18-18 : FT : 19-18: GP .
Lead Exchange: Hull – Square - Wakefield.
Referee: Marcus Griffiths.