Hosts Derby were aiming to open up a first-leg advantage having dominated the two regular-season meetings between the two, but it was Hull who put one foot in the final by winning 3-0.
Relive it all with Sports Mole's minute-by-minute updates below.
Morning all! After the Championship playoff semi-finals began last night with Sheffield Wednesday vs. Brighton & Hove Albion, it's time for the first leg of the other tie between Derby and Hull, who finished fifth and fourth respectively in the table. Kickoff about an hour away at the iPro Stadium and the team news is in!
DERBY XI: Carson, Christie, Bryson, Keogh, Martin, Russell, Shackell, Johnson, Hughes, Ince, Olsson
DERBY SUBS: Grant, Buxton, Hendrick, Bent, Baird, Butterfield, Blackman
Darren Wassall makes just one enforced change to the home side, with Bradley Johnson taking George Thorne's place in midfield. The latter, who has already endured plenty of injury woe in his short career, suffered a double leg break in the final-day defeat at home to Ipswich.
HULL XI: Jakupovic; Odubajo, Dawson, Davies, Robertson; Huddlestone, Livermore; Elmohamady, Diame, Snodgrass; Hernandez
HULL SUBS: Kuciak, Bruce, Maguire, Maloney, Clucas, Aluko, Akpom
Oooh, big surprise there as Tigers' first-choice keeper Allan McGregor misses out with a back injury. That's the only change Steve Bruce has made from the 5-1 win over Rotherham last weekend.
Okey doke, that's the team news but before we get right into this match, let's just look back on what happened in the first semi-final last night.
In an absolutely pulsating contest between two sides that finished 15 points apart in the table, it was the lower-ranked Sheffield Wednesday who beat Brighton 2-0 at Hillsborough. The Owls were the better side for much of the game, but that doesn't tell half the story. Wednesday were furious when a goal was correctly chalked off after a lengthy debate, but they recovered from that disappointment and took full advantage as Brighton lose FOUR key players to injury, having to play the final half an hour with 10 men. Plenty more in our match report.
So it looks like Brighton, who only missed out on automatic promotion on goal difference, will lose in the playoff semi-finals for the third time in four years! Seagulls boss Chris Hughton is adamant that the tie is not over, but with so many of his first-choice XI now either suspended or injured, it's hard to see them overturning that scoreline. If they do, they will be the first side to ever overcome a 2-0 first-leg deficit in the playoffs.
UPDATE: Here's what Steve Bruce has had to say on McGregor's injury:
OK, time to take a closer look at today's two teams in depth and we'll start with home side Derby...
So much was expected of the Rams after they spent around £25m last summer and in January to sign the likes of Bradley Johnson, Tom Ince, Jacob Butterfield, Jason Shackell and Nick Blackman, but it has been another tough season. After going on a torrid run towards the end of last term to miss out altogether on the playoffs, Derby managed to get in the top six this time around but failed to really mount a sustained automatic-promotion charge as the board again decided to change managers.
Following Steve McClaren's exit last year, former Real Madrid and PSG assistant Paul Clement was offered the chance to be a head coach for the first time and although it was a risk, most thought it would work out given how much Derby spent on players. However, Clement left after only eight months in charge in February and he has been replaced by ex-academy boss Darren Wassall. The latter has been given the job until the end of the season and if the Rams go up it will be hard for the board not to offer him the full-time post, even if more experienced names are available.
PLAYOFF HISTORY: This will be Derby's sixth venture into the playoffs, with the Rams only winning promotion once, from the Championship in 2006-07. Derby reached the play-off final in 2014, but lost in heartbreaking fashion to QPR as Bobby Zamora snatched a late winner in a match which the Rams dominated at Wembley.
When QPR went up that year, they finished fourth, like Hull, but they are the only fourth-placed teams to achieve Premier League promotion in the last 17 years.
Some more stats from the guys at Sky:
As you can see there, Hull are trying to achieve promotion straight back to the big time like champions Burnley. The Tigers were more consistent contenders for automatic promotion than Derby throughout the season but a run of just one win in eight between February and April saw their hopes of a top-two finish fade. They finished the campaign well with four wins and just one defeat in six, while Derby failed to win any of their last three after four wins on the bounce.
H2H: Derby did brilliantly in both matches against Hull, scoring six goals without reply, but Hull's record against the Rams was good before that as they had won five of the previous six meetings.
In fact, those two results ended a run of seven matches unbeaten against Derby for Tigers boss Bruce, who is trying to win a fourth promotion to the Premier League as a manager.
PLAYOFF HISTORY: Hull have taken part in two previous playoff campaigns, securing promotion to the Premier League in their last post-season appearance in 2007-08.
Save it for the match!
PREDICTION: Right, as the two teams come out of the tunnel it's time for my pre-match prediction. Surely it won't be as convincing as Derby's 6-0 aggregate scoreline in the regular season, but I do think the Rams might just edge today's first leg – 2-1 to the hosts.
The iPro is rocking!
KICKOFF! Hull, all in amber today, kick off as referee Neil Swarbrick gets us underway!
Rams captain Keogh does really well to head the ball back to his keeper Carson when he looked off-balance and could have easily put it out for a corner. The former will be off to Euro 2016 with the Republic of Ireland this summer.
First bit of good play from both teams as first Derby winger Russell goes on a mazy run before Odubajo wins it back and storms forward himself. The latter's cutback fails to find Tigers top scorer Hernandez, though.
Not another game punctuated by injuries surely? Brighton were desperately unfortunate last night and now Derby midfield Johnson is stricken on the turf.
Looks like the former Norwich man is OK to continue and Hull then have their first shot of the match but it's a wayward one as Hernandez slices wide.
Huddlestone slips in the middle to gift Derby the ball high up the pitch, but the hosts cannot take advantage as Russell's attempted through-ball to Martin goes out of play.
Hernandez has had a quiet start in attack for Hull, but he is the first Tigers player to score 20+ league goals in a season since Stuart Elliott (27 goals in 2004-05).
SHOT! First real moment of note in the match as Bryson makes a key bock on a well-struck Robertson volley, but the ball falls kindly to Huddlestone on the edge of the box and he shoots wide.
Ince theatrically throws himself to the floor and Swarbrick buys it. Free kick to Derby about 22 yards out on the left corner of the box...
Ince's delivery misses everyone but Derby do get a corner as Hernandez pokes it out when he could have just let it drift out of play.
The Rams end up getting a pair of corners, but neither comes to anything as Christie fails to get up and meet the second at the back post.
Pretty even start to this match as the sun beats down on the iPro Stadium.
And there's proof of how tight it has been so far: 50-50 on the possession count.
Lovely one-two between Hughes and Martin, but then Johnson takes a poor touch in the box after the former picked him out well with a cutback.
The Rams fans are pretty happy at the moment as their team begins to dominate
Difficult chance for Martin about 20 yards out and he produces a similar effort to Hernandez earlier at the other end by slicing it off target.
Really good ball in as Snodgrass surges down the left but Hernandez wasn't up with the Scot and Carson was able to collect in the six-yard box.
BOOKING! Derby full-back Olsson is the first player cautioned after a rash challenge on Odubajo in the corner.
Half-chance for Hull from the resulting free kick as Hernandez heads over Snodgrass's delivery.
GOAL! DERBY 0-1 HULL (ABEL HERNANDEZ)
Out of nowhere, Hull score! It's the first effort on target as Hernandez picks the ball up after loose touch from Johnson, driving forward and then picking out the bottom corner with a low shot from 25 yards. I think Carson will think that he should have kept it out at his near post, but it was a well-directed shot from the Uruguayan.
22 now for the season!
BOOKING! Hull centre-back Dawson joins Olsson in the book after committing one too many foul.
CLOSE! The tide has completely turned at the iPro as Hull go close to a second. Robertson finds the run of Diame with a cute pass and the big midfielder scuffs his shot a little, but it's only just wide.
GOAL! DERBY 0-2 HULL (MOSES ODUBAJO)
How lucky is that?! Odubajo tries his luck and it takes TWO deflections before wrongfooting Carson and nestling in the near corner. It initially looked like a Shackell own goal, but I think that it was on target when it hit Olsson and then cannoned into Shackell and in, so will probably go down as the right-back's goal. Not quite sure how Derby are losing, let alone by two goals, here.
Chance for Derby to get one back before half time, but Ince's free kick is cleared away from danger. Bruce must be ecstatic on the sideline!
BOOKING! Into two minutes of added time and Livermore is booked for a late tackle on Keogh.
HALF-TIME: DERBY 0-2 HULL
Hull on top at half time then thanks to goals from Hernandez and Odubajo. The second might go down as a Shackell own goal but I think that Odubajo's shot was heading goalwards when it ricocheted off Olsson, then Shackell. Derby will feel really hard done by, but they've got 45 minutes to turn this first leg around. Back soon for the second half!
Righty ho, second half about to get underway at the sun-soaked iPro. No changes at the break.
KICKOFF! Derby, who need a mighty second-half comeback, get us back underway. Reminder that Olsson, Dawson and Livermore were booked in the opening period.
CLOSE! Hull win a corner and Snodgrass's outswinger is attacked really well by Davies, but he can't keep his header down. A third Hull goal might just make it tie over.
Just looking at the stats, Derby started so well but they have managed only three shots and none on target. It also says that Hull have only had one – Hernandez's goal – but I'm sure Odubajo's was on target before the penalty-box pinball that saw it end up in the corner.
Keogh's not happy with the award of a corner, but it looked like it did graze his boot as Robertson kept the ball in play. Still, nothing came of it anyway.
What must Wassall be thinking on the touchline? Surely it's time for a change soon with the likes of Darren Bent and Nick Blackman on the bench.
DERBY SUB: It's not Bent or Blackman, but Butterfield who comes on for Johnson.
SHOT! Snodgrass takes on a 30-yard free kick and gets it up and over the wall. Carson was ready to make the save, but Shackell was back and headed it behind.
Hull celebrate their second goal of the game
Well there really hasn't been much of note to talk about in the second half and that will suit Hull just fine!
Diame tries to change that and put the visitors three up, but his shot is an easy one for Carson to hold.
Still no shot on target for Derby as Bryson tries his luck from 20 yards but slices it horribly wide.
DERBY SUB: Here comes Blackman, taking Russell's place in the Derby attack.
BOOKING! Odubajo becomes the third Hull player booked for time-wasting.
And now Odubajo goes through the back of Ince but gets away with it! One more bad tackle and he'll be off!
Christie heads over at the back post but it would not have counted anyway as the offside flag was up. Time running out here for Derby.
Break in play here as Bryson goes down after Snodgrass inadvertently caught him on the forehead with the point of his elbow as they challenged for a 50-50. No malice there but Bryson is bleeding from his head.
Today's attendance at the iPro is 29,969, with 3,009 travelling Tigers singing their hearts out in the away corner.
We're still not back underway as Derby assistant Craig Short receives instructions via a pitchside telephone from Derby's football consultant Harry Redknapp up in the stands. Might be too little, too late now.
Deary me. Sarcastic cheers from some home supporters as Butterfield has Derby's first shot on target, aiming a 25-yarder straight at Jakupovic.
Now Jakupovic makes another save, but he didn't need to as Ince's shot was bobbling comfortably wide. Odd decision from Hull's stand-in keeper, who couldn't have wished for an easier afternoon.
HULL SUB: First Tigers change as Akpom replaces goalscorer Hernandez in attack. Big embrace for the Uruguayan from Bruce as he leaves the field.
SUBS: Both sides make a change – Snodgrass off for Clucas and Bent on for Hughes.
SIDE-NETTING! Close to a third for Hull as Elmohamady surges into the box and rounds Carson but can't get his foot around it and between the posts.
Derby's supporters have been so quiet in the second half. Their team has really let them down but there's hardly been any encouragement.
Five minutes of added time signalled.
Worrying moment here for Hull as Jakupovic and Odubajo collide as they tried to clear the ball in the box. Looks like both are bleeding and there may be some teeth on the pitch.
We're back underway after a lengthy stoppage and there will probably be about eight or nine total minutes of added time.
CHANCE! Akpom could put it to bed but loses his balance in the box and shoots over.
HULL SUB: Manager's son Alex Bruce is on for Hull in place of Diame.
GOAL! DERBY 0-3 HULL (ANDREW ROBERTSON)
Derby have a late corner, but it's an awful delivery from Ince and Hull streak away on the counter-attack. Odubajo does brilliantly to find the run of Robertson and the full-back waits and waits before picking out the bottom corner from 20 yards. What a huge goal that could be.
FULL-TIME: DERBY 0-3 HULL
An awful afternoon for Derby as they lose 3-0 at home having started the match really well. They never recovered from giving away a cheap goal and Hull in the end fully deserved the win. Surely the Tigers will be reaching the playoff final, where they are likely to be up against Sheffield Wednesday after the Owls won 2-0 in their first leg against Brighton last night.
Derby will try to pick themselves up for the second leg on Tuesday night, but it's an almighty task away from home against a Hull side that will be full of confidence. Thanks for joining SM this afternoon, why not now head back to the homepage for the conclusion of the La Liga season as both Barcelona and Real Madrid go for the title. Enjoy the rest of your weekend!