Castleford coach Powell aims to strengthen defence

Castleford Tigers' new coaching team, Daryl Powell and Danny Orr. Picture: MATTHEW MERRICK
Castleford Tigers' new coaching team, Daryl Powell and Danny Orr. Picture: MATTHEW MERRICK

Daryl Powell has immediately turned his attention to improving Castleford Tigers’ defence in his first week after taking over as head coach.

The former Featherstone Rovers boss believes he has inherited a team that has plenty of attacking flair, but needs a few tweaks to tighten up defensively if they are to fulfil their potential.

He said: “The focus since I came in has been on defence. It’s been about how we defend, how we manage contacts and some communication processes that I felt needed to be improved.

“So far I’ve focused on what we do when we haven’t got the ball. I do believe that with the ball there are a lot of special things in there. This team can score tries.

“The team’s been playing with a fair bit of confidence and it’s been fractions away in terms of winning games.

“Even the game against Salford, which they lost, they were within eight, nine minutes of winning it. It was a disappointing result, but it showed they are in the battle.

“We’ve got to make sure that we continue to do that.”

While admitting it will be a tough task to win his first game in charge with the Tigers away to Catalan Dragons on Saturday Powell is pleased to have a trip away to begin with.

He added: “In many ways it’s an ideal start. I’ve got a great opportunity to sit down with the guys and see them in a slightly different environment, which is always good.

“But ultimately it’s about going there and winning a game and it will be a tough challenge for us.

“Catalan will be disappointed in their last time out in Super League against Wakefield so they’ll be motivated and we’ve got to go there and meet them head on.

“They’ve got a team full of ability and talent and size. They’re a formidable outfit up front – we’ve got to match that.

“It was a close, tight game last time out against Catalan. It couldn’t have been any closer at 17-all.

“Drawing against them will give the players confidence and this team can beat anybody, there’s no question about that – it’s being able to do it consistently that’s the key.”