Castleford Tigers gave their chances of finishing in the top five a huge boost as they thrashed Hull FC 44-12 at the Mend A Hose Jungle on Thursday night.
It was a fast start from Castleford, and they got their reward as they spread the ball out wide and Cheyse Blair stretched out to score. Jamie Ellis converted to make it a six point advantage.
Young halfback Jake Trueman then took over the show as his dummy fooled the Hull defence and he got over to score. Ellis converted again to double the Tigers lead.
Trueman then got through a gap again to run through and score. Ellis converted and then added a penalty soon after to make it a 20 point lead for Castleford.
Hull needed to respond, and they did eventually just after the half hour as Masi Matongo stretched over the line. Marc Sneyd converted in front of the posts to reduce their deficit to 14 points going into half time.
The Tigers posted the first try of the second half after Hull lost the ball and Trueman danced through the defence once more to claim his hat trick. Ellis converted again as Castleford re established their 20 point advantage.
It could have got even worse for Hull as Daniel Smith got over just two minutes later, but it was ruled out by the video referee for a knock on.
But there was another setback as Jamie Shaul was sent to the sin bin for holding down as Castleford tried to break.
The Black and Whites needed a break, and they got it as a Castleford kick deflected into the path of Jack Logan, who ran from one end of the pitch to the other to score. Sneyd converted to make it a 14 point game once more.
But the last word would go to Castleford as they found away through again in the final ten minutes as James Clare got in out wide unopposed. Ellis continued his perfect record with the boot to put the Tigers in front by 20 points once more.
It didn’t end there either as Jordan Rankin managed to get on the end of a kick to score. Ellis scored the conversion to make it a 26 point lead.
Hull had well and truly lost it at this point and Jake Connor ended up saying something out of turn to the referee and was sent to the sin bin for the remainder of the match.
Cas took full advantage of the extra man as Matt Cook powered his way to the line, as he marked his return with a win. Ellis completed a perfect night with the boot to take his personal points total to 16 points.
It sealed a fantastic win for the Tigers, who now go into the final playoff place with one game to go. They just have to match Hull’s final result to make the playoffs. They travel to Wigan Warriors next Friday.
As for Hull, it is a deeply concerning run as they fall out of top five for the first time since March. They play St Helens at home next Friday, a game that they have to win and hope the Tigers lose at Wigan