Top of the table Castleford enjoyed a Good Friday as they came out on top 42-24 in their local derby against Wakefield Trinity at the Mend-A-Hose Jungle.
The Tigers effectively had the Adam Watene Trophy won by half-time as they led by 24 points and although Wakefield kept going right to the end and deserved credit for sticking at it the class of the leaders shone through as they scored seven tries to four and two others disallowed.
Jake Webster and Grant Millington led the way with two tries each with Oliver Holmes, Greg Eden and sponsors man of the match Ben Roberts also crossing.
Impressive forward David Fifita led the Trinity scoring with a try double while Bill Tupou and Ben Jones-Bishop, late on, got their other two.
Castleford went in 36-12 ahead at the break after proving unstoppable in attack.
They made their customary slow start and went behind in the third minute when Sam Williams’ high kick was allowed to bounce and David Fifita collected to smash his way over for the first try, goaled by Williams.
But the response was emphatic as the Tigers showed why they went into the game clear at the top of the Betfred Super League.
Their first try came on nine minutes as Ben Roberts completed a great old fashioned runaround move with Mike McMeeken to race over.
Gale added the conversion and went on to kick all six attempts he had on goal in the opening half.
Scott Grix’s restart went out on the full and a second score followed when Jake Webster took a short pass by Roberts, running a great angled line to charge in.
Good defence prevented Webster from scoring again as he was bundled in touch two metres out, Bill Tupou doing particularly well just after coming back on after having a head check following an earlier tackle.
Trinity threatened after a good kick by Jacob Miller gave them good field position, but a loose pass let the hosts off the hook and Roberts broke away on the free play only to be well tackled into touch by Tupou just over half-way.
A Gale 40-20 kick put Cas back in a strong position and from the next set Oliver Holmes crashed through a tackle to burst over for a third home try.
Back came Trinity as Kyle Wood was held up over the line and a Williams high kick had to be superbly taken under pressure on the line by Joel Monaghan.
A Grix grubber was just too strong to end another attack and within a minute of this the Tigers scored again as Grant Millington shrugged off a tackle close to the line to crash over.
Wakefield hit back through Tupou who took Miller’s kick to go over and Williams’ conversion narrowed the score to 24-12.
But this woke Cas back up and they scored two more tries before the interval. First, Millington produced another strong finish after taking a clever reverse pass by Gale. Then, Webster backed up a superb break by Gale for his second score of the day.
The second half could not match the first for entertainment and was a bit flat despite the big 10,349 crowd.
Wakefield initially enjoyed a good spell of pressure that ended when Grix’s grubber went out over the back-line.
Cas bombed a great chance when the otherwise excellent Paul McShane opted to go for the line when a pass to the supporting McMeeken looked a better option. He was tackled inches short, it was on the last tackle, and the opportunity had gone.
Monaghan did get the ball down over the line only to see his effort ruled out for a forward pass to him by Roberts.
From the next set, Trinity marched downfield after Tom Johnstone’s break down the touchline and Fifita took an inside pass from Miller to go over for his second try.
More pressure followed with Jones-Bishop held out a metre out, but following a mystery penalty given against them in their own half Wakefield conceded again.
Swift handling on the left edge led to Eden diving over and at 42-18 any hopes of a comeback for the visitors was over.
They kept going with Liam Finn’s high kick forcing a drop-out, but the Tigers were on attack on 72 minutes and thought they had scored through Eden again only for the video referee to rule a controversial obstruction decision against the home team.
Trinity did gain some late consolation with Jones-Bishop doing well in a tight space to get the ball down over the line, although video replays showed he may have been fortunate to be given the score.
It did not matter for the result with Castleford maintaining their 100 per cent home record and running up a 40-plus score for the fifth time at the Mend-A-Hose Jungle.
Scorers - Castleford: tries Roberts, Webster 2, Holmes, Millington 2, Eden; goals Gale 7. Wakefield: Tries Fifita 2, Tupou, Jones-Bishop; goals Williams 3, Finn.
Castleford Tigers: Hardaker; Monaghan, Webster, Minikin, Eden; Roberts, Gale; Lynch, McShane, Springer, Holmes, McMeeken, Milner. Subs: Chase, Sene-Lefao, Moors, Millington.
Wakefield: Grix; Jones-Bishop, Arundel, Tupou, Johnstone; Miller, Williams; Fifita, Wood, Allgood, Ashurst, Kirmond, Arona. Subs: Finn, Hadley, Huby, England.
Referee: Chris Kendall.