Castleford Tigers boss Daryl Powell reckons home form holds the key to his side’s season.
The Tigers have only lost once at the Mend-A-Hose Jungle so far this season and have seven more home games to come in 2016 with only four more on away soil.
The next two matches are both at home and rated vital by the head coach, starting with this Sunday’s visit of Hull KR.
“Our home form is really crucial,” Powell told the Express.
“It’s a bit of an anomaly that we’ve played seven games away and only four at home.
“I think it’s important we make that work in our favour and we make sure our home form is rock solid, regardless of the circumstances and the difficulty in team selections.
“We’re at home, we’ve got great support and we need to do that support justice by being right on top of our game.
“We’re confident whoever takes the field that it’s going to be a good team and we’ve got to make sure we play well.”
Powell is gearing his side up to face a pumped up Hull KR side after their shock Challenge Cup exit at the hands of Championship side Oldham.
He said: “We’re certainly playing teams that have got a bit to prove. Wigan got rattled by Wakefield and were motivated to bounce back and Hull KR have had a tough result in the cup.
“We know that they’ll have had a tough week in practice and will be looking to respond.
“But we’ve just got to focus on ourselves and make sure we play better than last week. There’s plenty of improvement in us.
“We know it will be a difficult game, but we’ve not got to worry too much about the opposition, just make sure we get our game right.
“When we do that we know we’re really going to be competitive and tough to beat.
“It was obviously a tough one for them and you get those type of cup results every now and again. They wouldn’t have expected that. Oldham are not one of the high flyers in the Championship, but it shows that Rugby League is a game where if you turn up a little bit shy of your best then you put yourself under pressure.
“They will be looking to make sure they respond, which obviously means danger for us so we’ve got to make sure we play well.”
Cas will be looking for a better result than on the opening day of the season when they drew at Hull KR.
Powell added: “They got us right at the end with that goal kick to get a draw in the opener. I thought we deserved to win that game, but it was pretty tight and they went right to the death and got something out of it.”