Davy Litten hits back at critics with strong Hull FC position declaration made

Davy Litten was on top form for Hull FC reserves.
-Credit: (Image: Dave Lofthouse, Hull FC)

There was a natural sense of satisfaction surrounding Davy Litten after Sunday's emphatic Hull FC reserves win, but for the 21-year-old, the constant strive for improvement is clear to see.

While happy with his performance, Litten is already looking to get better, reviewing his display on video and working hard on the training field to perfect his game. He's never been any different.

Standing out in the Black and Whites' 60-4 victory over Leigh Leopards, Litten got the shot at full-back he craved. For the club's reigning Young Player of the Year, it's the position he wants to play, and he's hellbent to make his case.

Click here - Get the latest news on our Rugby League Live WhatsApp channel

Against the Leythers, he did just that. He scored two tries in the victory, but his account was about so much more than that. The best player on the pitch, Litten played with energy throughout, running the ball fast, whether on a kick return or chiming into the line, finding the offload, and making the pass.

Defensively, he also did his bit, with the highlight being a thunderous hit on Leigh centre Tom Nisbet. It was an eye-catching display, and for Litten, who has had to remain patient this year with the young star deployed as the 18th man in the first-team in recent weeks, it was a reminder of what he can do.

"That's what I wanted and needed—to get some gametime at full-back and show that I've still got it there," Litten told Hull Live post-match. "Some people seem to think that I don't, but I feel like I do, and hopefully, this is a stepping stone to show what I can do.

"Of course, the hard work continues, but I'm willing to work hard, and I won't ever stop doing that. I couldn't move in the final ten minutes, but that's what I pride myself on: energy and effort, and with more gametime and games, I'll get better.

"I know I can still improve, but it was a good game to get back up and running. I'm happy with my defence mostly, my numbers, my organisation, and my positioning. That's what I need to work on, and all the other things will come if I look after number one, and that's not letting any tries in.

"It's a pressure position, but I like pressure positions. The more I'm playing there, the more comfortable I feel. I feel at home there. That's my preferred position and that's where I want to play for this club in the future."

Locked in a battle with Logan Moy and Jack Walker for Hull FC's number one spot, Litten has naturally found frustration in not playing, but his attitude never changes. He sees it as healthy competition, with the three players spurring each other on to get better.

"May the best man win," he joked. "There's a lot of competition, but that will only get the best out of me, along with Wakka and Logan. As long as we keep helping each other, we'll be fine.

"I'm really proud of Logan. He's come in. He's only 18 and he's more than held his own, but there's no mistake here that I want that position. We get along; we're good mates, and it's the same with Wakka.

"People forget how good Wakka is. He won a Grand Final at 17 and has played over 100 games. He probably feels like he should be in the team, but that's what's good about having good squads and good competition. We all knock on each other's doors, but I love them both and see them as good mates. Whatever happens, happens, but that's where I want to be.

"The only way I can prove I deserve this spot is to keep working hard, train hard, and, when it comes to gameday, play well. I haven't had that much this year. I've only had 7/8 games across Super League, on loan at York, and in the reserves, but when it comes to gametime, it doesn't matter what excuses I've got—not playing, being the 18th man—it's all about how I play when it comes down to those eighty minutes.

"I think I was good for about sixty of them here, and I know I can be better in twenty of them, so that's the next challenge. I'll keep training hard and doing video on it, and see where I need to work and whatever comes next, and it's the same for everyone; fix those moments and turn them into rights."

Staying positive, Litten is adamant that the same mindset is there across the whole team this year, regardless of results. Naturally, confidence has lowered when the side has been losing games, but as a collective and in terms of team spirit, nothing has changed.

"It's never felt like there's been a drop," Litten added. "It sounds stupid, but all of the boys were still coming to training with energy. It is what it is; no one wants to lose games, but I wouldn't put it down to a lack of effort, especially since Grixy has been in charge.

"It's a confidence sport; if you're playing well and winning, then you're confident. If you're losing, then you're doubting yourself. Throughout the year, the boys have been training well, and we'll see how it goes next Sunday at Salford. Whatever team gets chosen, I'm sure we will leave it all out there.

"We just need to take it one week at a time and treat every game like a Grand Final. We'll see where that takes us, but we're definitely taking steps in the right direction."

Read more: Meet Callum Kemp, the rising half-back and twin in Hull FC's academy side