Castleford Tigers coach: Opening game gives us a good platform to build from

Castleford Tigers celebrate a try against Catalans Dragons. Picture: James Heaton
Castleford Tigers celebrate a try against Catalans Dragons. Picture: James Heaton

Head coach Daryl Powell believes the opening 20-4 victory over Catalans Dragons gives his side a good platform to build from.

In freezing conditions the Tigers only managed three tries, but conceded just one despite having to defend their line for long periods in both halves and Powell described it as a “good win”.

He said: “I thought we defended outstandingly.

“We were under a lot of pressure with a few penalties in the first half. They got three repeat sets in the first half too.

“On the back of that territorial advantage the play was pretty heavily in their favour.

“The fact we scored a couple of tries and went 12-0 up was massively down to our defence.”

Powell continued: “It was a really pleasing performance.

“There were a few errors and we will want to improve, but our attitude was great defensively and with the ball. We went after it a bit too much in the second half and couldn’t quite finish the game off. We will learn from that.

“It was a tough game and we took a while to break them down.

“We had to show a lot of patience. We only had a couple of sets in attacking positions in the first half.

“At the other end of the field we did really well.

“We have put a lot of emphasis in defence this pre-season and to only concede one try late one, I thought we looked pretty comfortable for large parts of it. It gives us a good platform to build from.”

Coach Daryl Powell hailed the role played by last year’s player of the year at the club, hooker Paul McShane, who scored a try and kicked four goals.

He added: “He is a pretty special player isn’t he?

“We have a young half in Jake Trueman who is playing exceptional rugby league, but he is still learning his game. Jordan Rankin is new into the team so McShane is a general for us with Luke Gale not in the team due to his injury.”