Hull FC: Beating Castleford didn't paper over our cracks - Gentle
PETER Gentle says he won't let Hull FC's 52-0 win over Castleford paper over the cracks that are still apparent in his team.
While delighted with Hull's return to winning ways last week, Gentle says the fact the Tigers handed so many points to his men could camouflage the improvements his side need to make.
Determined to not let that happen, Gentle has drilled the message more hard work is needed and he's told his troops nothing short of their very best will suffice this week when they head to Super League leaders Huddersfield Giants.
" I think we have to make a step up from last week and previous weeks in this game. We will have to be at our best on Saturday," Gentle told the Mail.
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"There are things to learn in wins and defeats and there was a lot to learn from last week. Castleford forfeited us a few of our tries and we didn't have to work too hard for our points last week.
"That camouflaged a few things and can maybe paper over the cracks that are there. We are still a work in progress and have a lot of hard work left to do. The theme of the week has been to continue that hard work.
"We have shown for 50 or 60 minutes we can be a decent team, now we need to push that up."
Gentle is eager to see a marked improvement this week, knowing his side face a stern test of their credentials at the home of the league leaders.
Despite returning to winning ways with their comprehensive win against Castleford, it's been a difficult week for the Black and Whites.
Victory over the Tigers came at a huge cost with Danny Tickle suspended, and Kirk Yeaman (broken thumb) and Aaron Heremaia (ribs) both ruled out of the trip to the John Smith's Stadium.
Gentle is also sweating on the fitness of several of his players who also featured against Castleford, having been forced to run with a patched-up squad at training this week.
The return to the squad of Jason Crookes and Ben Crooks provide some relief for Gentle, who admits the loss of Yeaman and Tickle in particular will see him replace like for like rather than risk shuffling his players around.
"The depth of our squad allows me to go like for like," explained Gentle.
"Nobody has let us down when they've played. "We've confidence in the players coming in and this is an opportunity for them to show again what they've got. I expect to go like for like."
Hull FC's 19-man squad: Arundel, Bowden, Briscoe, Crooks, Crookes, Galea, Green, Holdsworth, Horne, Houghton, Johnson, Lineham, Lynch, McDonnell, O'Meley, Pitts, Watts, Westerman, Whiting.