Castleford boss: We need to heed warning signs

Daryl Powell. Picture: Matthew Merrick
Daryl Powell. Picture: Matthew Merrick

Castleford Tigers boss Daryl Powell wants his team to heed the warning of recent games when they have been unable to kick on after building a healthy lead.

While Powell is pleased the Tigers managed to take four points from the last two matches against Leeds and Salford, the Tigers failed to score a single try in the second half of both games, which could point to a mentality issue.

Only several missed kicks by Kallum Watkins allowed Cas to come away from Elland Road with a win after they had led 24-0 and Powell is determined to get to the root of the problem.

He said: “In the last couple of games we’ve had some periods where we were outstanding.

“We were 20-nil up against Salford and 24-0 up against Leeds. There was some outstanding pieces of play from us and then go to the other side where we got reeled back in by Salford and then again in this game.

“So there’s a few areas we need to fix up defensively and from a mindset perspective.

“We can’t afford to give teams the opportunity to get back into games. We very nearly paid the price against Leeds so there’s some warning signs there for us that we need to make sure we tidy up in a few areas.”

Powell has been encouraged in recent games with the Tigers getting some of their attacking fluency back.

He said: “There’s signs we are going to be really dangerous as we move through the season. The difficulty for us is not being able to get consistent rugby league. It’s been stop-start, but if we can get this game first and foremost Thursday – you always have to take the second game as it comes over Easter – then we’ll be in a good place.”

For tonight’s game at Wakefield Trinity, Powell has made just one change to the 19-man squad who took on Leeds Rhinos last weekend with Oliver Holmes returning from his one match ban and Jy Hitchcox missing out.

Recent signing Liam Watts is available for Monday’s game at home to Warrington after serving his ban while Joe Wardle could be back after injury and Mitch Clark may be recalled from his loan spell at Featherstone, but Powell is focusing fully on the Trinity match.

He added: “Wakefield are one of the most dangerous teams in the competition. They are moving the ball fluently, their half backs are playing well, they have a big pack – a massive pack – and their outside backs are excellent.

“They have threat across the park and will be a real challenge for us.

“We have a couple of boys coming back in this week. Obviously Oli Holmes and Shenny hopefully will be back. I’m not sure about Joe Wardle yet but on Monday Liam Watts is available so we will have some opportunities.

“Gadwin is available and we need to make a decision about whether we bring Mitch Clark back. But we are in a good spot. We’ll be okay. We’ve got two tough games so we’re going to need to go well.”