At the core of Hull FC’s opening round win, though it ended up being much tougher, was two thirds of their brand new spine in former Newcastle Knights duo Jake Clifford and Tex Hoy.
They already have a partnership built from their time together in the NRL and are ready to take Super League by storm.
Two major signings, speaking on the Super League YouTube channel, the two revealed how the moves came about and they appeared to be in different circumstances as Clifford said he was “pushed” and Hoy was ready for a change.
Clifford said: “We’d just finished the season and I heard a few rumours I was kind of getting pushed out of the club, so Hull FC came about and I signed a contract within three days.”
Meanwhile, Hoy’s answer was: “I was kind of ready for a change, I lived in Newcastle for 22 years and I just thought it was probably a good time to get out. I didn’t think I was going to move to the UK but it came about. It just felt like going for a holiday but I’m still here going strong and enjoying it.”
In terms of differences between the UK and Australia, Clifford said: “Coming in from 38 degree heat to negative four that first week was such a big change. Their coffee, you can’t beat an Australian coffee. At the moment I’m still yet to find a coffee that I’m loving so I’m still on the hunt, if you’ve got one hit me up.”
Meanwhile, the view of Hoy was: “There’s a whole list of things really, the roads being really thin, the yellow lights to go. The food is a big one as well, the weather was a massive one.
Lastly, Clifford emphasised the freedom Tony Smith has given him and his teammates: “He cares about the footy but also what’s off the field and your family too, I think that’s very important. Being a footy player you get coaches that are more worried about the footy side but he really cares about family and how you’re going off the field.
“Letting us run the team and have such a big say on how we want to play is a big thing to being very player driven. I’m really enjoying that. In the NRL it is a bit more structured and coaches have a bigger say on how we play.
“It’s kind of been down to us, we’ve got a structure but he hasn’t got a set thing on what we have to play. Super League is such an attacking game so I feel its going to open up for us to try and do them type of things.”