Scott Taylor accepts Hull have to make a significant improvement defensively if they are to mount a serious challenge for silverware once again.
On average, the Black and Whites leaked 25 points in every regular-season Super League game in 2020.
And their hopes of upsetting the odds and making the Grand Final for the first time since 2006 were ended by Wigan’s 29-2 semi-final success.
And according to prop and co-captain Taylor, it’s an area new coach Brett Hodgson, who has been tasked with delivering a first league title since 1983, has concentrated on.
“Our points against record last season was a big issue, disgraceful really,” says the 30-year-old international, who started out at Hull KR and served Wigan for three years before joining his current club in 2016.
“It certainly needs sorting out, and since Brett came in we’ve done plenty of work in that area, with a lot of effort put in to the little things that, when put together, will hopefully make a big difference.”
Taylor, who did the double with Wigan in 2013, says it’s high time Hull were back reaching major finals.
“We had those two Challenge Cup Final wins in 2016 and 2017, but since then we haven’t really been anywhere near,” he admits.
“We’ve had a good team on paper, but out on the pitch, we have underachieved, and we know a big improvement is needed.”
Australian Hodgson, appointed in November, returned to Wests Tigers, where he had been assistant coach, to snap up Josh Reynolds.
And Taylor believes the seasoned halfback, who played Origin for New South Wales in 2014, can make a big difference.
“I’ve been really impressed,” he explains.
“I knew Josh can play, but I didn’t realise just how professional he is.
“He’s had a right dig in training, and that kind of approach really inspires the other lads.”
While Reynolds featured in Thursday’s warm-up win at York, Taylor sat out the first match at the Championship club’s new LNER Community Stadium because of an Achilles tendon niggle.
However he’s confident of making the Super League opener against Huddersfield on Sunday week, March 28.
“It’s not a major issue, and the treatment is doing the trick,” he says.
“I fancied playing against York, but it wasn’t worth the risk.”
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