HULL FC are expecting a crowd of over 15,000 for their opening Super League XV home game of the season against the Giants at the KC Stadium tomorrow (8.00).
The black and whites opened the season buzzing on the back of signing inspirational former St Helens scrum half Sean Long and top Australian forwards Craig Fitzgibbon and Mark O’Meley.
Their arrivals helped the sale of season tickets break the 9,000 mark.
And with Hull having won 32-12 at St Helens in their 2010 opener on Saturday, Hull officials know a bumper KC gate is already a certainty.
The East Stand (opposite the main stand) looks set for a sell-out, as does the popular South Stand.
It means an electric atmosphere is guaranteed for what is an eagerly-anticipated clash, with Long admitting he can’t wait to take to the field in front of his new fans in a Super League fixture for the first time.
“I’ve been waiting for this game from the moment I signed,” said Long.
“I was speaking to some of the boys earlier and they have all heard that a couple of areas of the KC are looking like sell-outs.
“If that’s the case it will be really fantastic. The atmosphere at the stadium is always amazing and it could be better than ever tomorrow night.”
Long, Fitzgibbon and O’Meley are all poised to make their home debuts after Hull coach Richard Agar named an unchanged squad for the Giants clash.
The charismatic Long will be looking to continue his superb form following his magnificent man-of-the-match performance against his former club last weekend.
Danny Washbrook and Jordan Turner are both named in the squad once again, despite missing out on the final cut against Saints.
There is no place for winger Mark Calderwood who is still out injured, otherwise Agar has picked from a fully fit squad.
Huddersfield chief Nathan Brown confirmed earlier in the week Larne Patrick will come in to replace injured prop Keith Mason (torn pectoral muscle).
That is the only change to the 19-man squad named ahead of last Friday’s 24-12 triumph over Bradford Bulls.
Hull FC: Berrigan, T. Briscoe, Cusack, Dowes, Fitzgibbon, Hall, Horne, Houghton, Lauaki, Long, Manu, O’Meley, Radford, Tansey, Tickle, Turner, Washbrook, Whiting, Yeaman.
Giants: B Hodgson, Cudjoe, Lolesi, Whaturia, D Hodgson, Brown, Robinson, Crabtree, Lunt, Gilmour, Fa’alogo, Raleigh, D Griffin, Lawrence, Faiumu, Grix, Aspinwall, Patrick, Horne.
Referee: Thierry Alibert.