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Super League preview: Bradford Bulls v Hull FC
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The Bradford Bulls will be out to halt a six-game losing run in Super League when Hull FC visit Odsal on Friday night, a game that can be seen live on Sky Sports 1.
The Bulls will be keen to forget last season's corresponding fixture when the men from East Yorkshire inflicted a record home defeat on Bradford as they ran out 70-6 winners.
While Bradford had a week off last weekend, Hull were booking their place in the Tetley's Challenge Cup semi-finals on Saturday courtesy of a 24-13 success in France over the Catalan Dragons.
The home side are boosted by the availability of Brett Kearney, Jarrod Sammut, Jamie Langley, Tom Olbison and Chev Walker, who all return to the Bulls squad.
However, the home side will be without Adam Sidlow, whose season has been ended and Matty Blythe. Both picked up knee injuries in the game against Wigan.
Bradford have six games left in the Super League this season and head coach Francis Cummins is keen for his troops to end their campaign on a winning now.
"They are all big ones now for us. On the back of recent weeks we have improved and we need to get a result to keep us in the fight. We believe we can do that and we did improve at Wigan only to let it slip at in the last twenty minutes," he said.
"It's also a big challenge for us coming on the back of Hull's great win in France last week. It's a pivotal one for us because Hull are a good side and if we get a win over them than the confidence can come flooding back and that would set us up for the rest of the season.
Hull have made one change to the squad which emerged from their trip to Perpignan with a vital cup win that has set up a semi-final clash against Warrington at Huddersfield's John Smith's Stadium.
Friday's clash will be Hull's fourth game in 19 days, although they will have to soldier on without Ben Galea due to an arm injury. His place in the 19-man squad has been taken by Paul Johnson.
Half-back Daniel Holdsworth is nearing full fitness, however, the ex-Salford playmaker will not be risked in Friday's clash.
Hull head coach Peter Gentle is desperate for Hull to finish as high up the Super League ladder as possible and is not contemplating resting any of his stars ahead of the Cup semi-final.
"With the position we are in the table, we don't have the luxury of holding anyone back," Gentle told the Hull Daily Mail.
"Maybe if we'd picked up a few wins recently we could have done that. We really need to win on Friday night so we'll be putting our biggest and best out there."
Bradford Bulls: Donaldson, Langley, Walker, Kearney, Gale, Kear, Scruton, Bateman, L'Estrange, Platt, Lulia, Purtell, Olbison, Manuokafoa, Addy, Foster, Diskin, Sammut, Evans.
Hull FC: Arundel, T. Briscoe, Crooks, Ellis, Green, Heremaia, Houghton, Johnson, Lineham, Lynch, McDonnell, O'Meley, Miller, Pitts, Tickle, Watts, Westerman, Whiting, Yeaman.
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Super League Table
|9||Hull K R||27||23|
|10||Salford Red Devils||27||23|
|13||Bradford Bulls *||27||10|
|Saturday 20th September|
|Leeds 20 - 24 Catalan Dragons|
|Warrington 22 - 19 Widnes|
|Friday 19th September|
|St Helens 41 - 0 Castleford|
|Thursday 18th September|
|Wigan 57 - 4 Huddersfield|
|Sunday 14th September|
|Wakefield 18 - 42 Hull K R|
|Saturday 13th September|
|Catalan Dragons 28 - 6 Castleford|
|London Broncos 36 - 46 Bradford|
|Friday 12th September|
|Salford 36 - 6 Widnes|
|Huddersfield 17 - 16 St Helens|
|Hull 24 - 19 Leeds|
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