Widnes v Hull FC: Gentle happy to make tough selection calls
HULL FC coach Peter Gentle says he welcomes having tough decisions to make over his team selection to face Widnes tomorrow.
FC are confident of having stand-off Daniel Holdsworth back in their ranks for the trip to the Stobart Stadium, after the Aussie missed the home defeat to Warrington with concussion.
Holdsworth has been named in the squad for tomorrow's match, with fellow Aussie Brett Seymour dropping out completely.
With Joe Arundel also in the frame after impressing for York, and Danny Tickle eyeing a starting position after returning on the bench last week against Warrington, Gentle admits he faced a tough test cutting down his 19-man squad.
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"I've waited just over 12 months to have these sort of decisions to make, but they are tough decisions," Gentle said.
"There's Jason Crookes and Tom Lineham, we also have Ben Crooks and Joe Arundel competing for places.
"Liam Watts has seen a specialist this week and could be back next week. It is healthy for the squad and all good for competition for places."
Holdsworth's inclusion in the squad will be a fillip for Gentle, who has placed further speculation on the long term future of Seymour after leaving the scrum-half out completely.
Seymour's absence comes on the back of being overlooked in the halves last week, with Gentle opting for hooker Aaron Hermaia.
"Daniel's had a light run and at the moment everything looks ok," added Gentle.
"Obviously, how he pulls up over the next day is important, but we've seen some encouraging signs there.
"There is nothing sinister there, just a concussion and he probably trained earlier in the week than he should have last week, and it set him back a bit.
"That's what you get from footballers who just want to play."
Despite losing to Warrington, Gentle says there is no pressure to change his side, and says he is happy with how his players performed, save for a 15-minute period where they collapsed and conceded four tries.
Lineham seems destined to keep his right wing position after Jason Crookes failed to make the squad because of his knee injury.
Holdsworth's return in place of Heremaia looks the only likely alteration.
"What having this competition does is it puts everyone on notice," added Gentle.
"The players can't afford to string a couple of bad games together.
"The competition for places is healthy."
Hull FC 19-man squad: Arundel, Briscoe, Crooks, Galea, Green, Heremaia, Holdsworth, Horne, Houghton, Johnson, Lineham, Lynch, McDonnell, O'Meley, Pitts, Tickle, Westerman, Whiting, Yeaman