With no Super League fixtures scheduled last weekend, Castleford Tigers Women travelled 300 miles south in order to compete in the London 9s rugby tournament.
The Tigresses are no strangers to the shorter format of the game, having won the Brighton 9s last year. That experience no doubt helped as Castleford went on to lift the 9s crown in London following a fairly dominant outing in the capital.
In the opening game, the orange and amber took on Ironside Ladies. A brace for Alex Wallace plus further tries from Georgie Hetherington, Courtney Pointon, Tamzin Renouf, Kirsty Higo and Tara Stanley earned the Tigresses a 30-0 win.
The second game followed a similar path with the Castleford outfit picking up a 26-0 win over the Royal Navy. There were new try scorers on the scoresheet with Georgia Roche and Jasmine Cudjoe producing their first efforts of the tournament. Meanwhile Higo, Wallace and Renouf scored for a second game in a row.
In the final group game, Castleford fell to their first defeat against a well organised Mosis side. However, the Tigresses soon got their revenge by beating them in the final 16-4.
Another brace for Wallace plus a try for Pointon earned the Yorkshire outfit their first piece of silverware of the season.
The team is now looking ahead to August 4 when they will take on Leeds Rhinos in the Challenge Cup final.
Castleford have endured a tough route, having faced and beaten the likes of defending champions Bradford Bulls and St Helens.
Head coach Lindsay Anfield said: “Of course we are thrilled to get to the Challenge Cup final in only our second year as a club.
“We had quite a tough draw to get there, having to beat the holders Bradford, then a close game against Saints before York in the semi, so I feel we are worthy finalists.
“I am really proud of our girls, especially with 10 of them being 18 or younger, as you can imagine they are extremely excited to be going to a final.”
One of Castleford’s star players, Tara Stanley, also shared her thoughts ahead of the big cup match, saying: “The final will be a huge challenge.
“Leeds thumped us at their place last month so we will need to up our game to compete with them, but I know we haven’t fired on all cylinders so far this season so we are looking forward to it.”
Castleford have never beaten Leeds in a competitive fixture with their only win over the Rhinos coming in a pre-season friendly last March.
The final will take place at Warrington and anyone who would like to ensure their place on the coach can contact Neil Norton on 07488390086.