Castleford Tigers head coach Daryl Powell reflected on what he saw as a poor performance from his team after Castleford Tigers crashed out of the Ladbrokes Challenge Cup at Hull.
Powell labelled his players’ game management after they had come from behind to lead in the second half as “crazy” after the Tigers surrendered an 18-16 advantage to a series of penalties that were kicked by Jake Connor.
He said: “I thought it was a poor performance.
“Obviously we didn’t handle the start well. We gave an intercept try away when we had created a little bit of an opportunity. They hurt you those.
“They score again soon after and it’s 12-0.
“I thought we did well to battle our way back into it and to be 14-12 at half-time I thought we can re-set a little bit here and get back on track.
“When we got to that point when we were in front, the way we tried to manage that I thought was crazy to be honest.
“We were off-loading the ball and we made an error, they get a penalty, kick the two points and we consistently gave penalties away after that.
“I thought they just beat us with a fair bit of intent right at the start and were a little bit too good for us.”
Powell is hoping lessons will be learned from the game with another game with Hull in Super League coming up soon.
He said: “We’ve got to make sure we deal with this well and we have an opportunity against these boys in a couple of weeks and we need to make sure there’s a fire burning in our belly as they have beaten us twice now and we’ve played poorly both times.
“Obviously there’s a little bit of Hull as well and the way they have dealt with us and we’ve got to find a way to knock them off.”
On the penalties that were kicked by Hull’s Jake Connor and crucially allowed them to get ahead, Powell said: “There were a couple of debatable ones in there.
“But we ended up really scrapping to get hold of tackles at times. They’ve got some players that are difficult to manage no doubt.
“It was just how we turned the ball over, we dropped the ball three times there around 60 metres out in reasonable field position. And on the back end of that the game’s just too quick and in those type of conditions we just weren’t smart enough.
“The game was played at two different speeds. It was fast forward when they were playing the game for and we just couldn’t get ruck speed for large parts of the game.
“I just thought they handled conditions better as a result of that and we made too many errors in key areas.”
Castleford now face another tough away game at Leeds Rhinos on Friday and Powell said it a now all about keeping focus on staying top of the Super League table.
He added: “There’s no point worrying about this now, it has gone.
“One thing we have done is when we’ve lost we’ve responded pretty well. We have to do that again.
“You lose big games and disappointing games, but you’ve got to bounce back quickly, learn lessons from it and make sure it doesn’t happen again.”