Feb 1 2013
Hull failed to overcome the shock absence of newly appointed captain Gareth Ellis as Leeds made a confident start to the defence of their Super League crown with a 36-6 victory.
All the pre-match focus had been on the England forward's eagerly-awaited return to Super League after a four-year stint in Australia but he was sensationally ruled out after damaging an ankle in the warm-up.
Richard Whiting had to take Ellis' second row spot and Chris Green was promoted from 18th man to the bench. However, inspired by long-serving half-backs Danny McGuire and Rob Burrow, the champions wore down the visitors' resistance to score five tries in the last 25 minutes and run out comfortable winners.
Leeds also lost one of their newcomers, Australian winger Joe Vickery, with an ankle injury but it could not take the gloss off a polished performance by the champions, for whom skipper Kevin Sinfield scored the points he needed to climb to eighth in the league's all-time list of scorers.
Meanwhile, Sam Tomkins underlined his status as Super League's poster boy by launching the new season with a hat-trick in an emphatic 42-0 Wigan win at Salford.
The Warriors' star full-back ran in three of his side's eight tries to puncture a party atmosphere at the Salford City Stadium sparked by the Reds' recent takeover.
Yet after coming perilously close to folding in the close season, the hosts will take heart from a spirited display, even if they looked some way short of the required standard.
Five-goal Pat Richards, Matty Smith, Josh Charnley, Iain Thornley and Liam Farrell also touched down for Wigan.