Castleford’s creative backs come in for praise

Luke Gale works the ball wide against Warrington Wolves. Picture: MATTHEW MERRICK
Luke Gale works the ball wide against Warrington Wolves. Picture: MATTHEW MERRICK

Head coach Daryl Powell has praised the performance of his half-backs and outside backs in helping Castleford Tigers to take a six-point lead at the head of the Betfred Super League.

A 36-16 victory Warrington Wolves maintained the Tigers’ unbeaten home record and Powell was pleased with the way his backs took the opportunity to impress.

He told the Express: “Luke Gale was very creative with his passing game and Ben Roberts was outstanding with his running game in particular.

“They were both excellent and caused Warrington a whole lot of trouble.

“Obviously having those two playing well makes your game tick along.

“I thought Zak Hardaker was outstanding and Greg Minikin, our back field players in particular were superb.

“Obviously Greg Eden scored five tries and that was a great effort.

“As a back three they were sharp and caused trouble for Warrington.”

Powell said: “I thought the speed of our set starts was too much for them.

“Our pack was also very good again. It was obviously disappointing to lose Junior Moors, but we won the pack battle and got over the top of them.

“Whilst there were a lot of individual performances, our team effort was excellent.”

Powell reckoned it was a mixed bag overall as Cas blew the Wolves away early on, but failed to score in the last 28 minutes.

He added: “It was a good win. It was a bit of a mixed performance, but for periods there we looked superb.

“Some of our attacking play was outstanding.

“We would have liked to have been a little bit more consistent over the 80 minutes, but ultimately getting the two points was important.

“We’ve not played right on top of our game for periods, but been too good for the opposition at home again, which is obviously great for us.

“We got a try and them having Chris Hill sin-binned really opened the doors for us. We took the opportunity really well with the execution of our plays and we were 20-0 up by the time he came back on so that was a significant period in the game.

“After that it was really mixed. They did some better things and we made some errors, but ultimately you’ve got to win a game and we’ve put ourselves six points clear, which, going into a break for the Challenge Cup, is an outstanding position.”