Castleford Tigers’ fans have been urged to stay loyal, because better times are coming.
Tigers will be aiming to end a six-game losing run – the worst in Stobart Super League – when they face Hull at Probiz Coliseum tomorrow.
Supporters are desperate to see Tigers get back to winning ways and coach Ian Millward admits he understands their frustration, but he said the first priority is to regain some of the consistency shown in the opening few weeks of the season – and he remains convinced they will turn things around.
“We are concentrating on performance,” the team boss insisted. “
“We have had a lot of disruption over the last few weeks and we need to get back to some consistency.
“We need to do that this week at home and there’s no reason why we can’t win this game. I’d like to think this week, being back at home will help us a lot.
“The support has been fantastic, it was outstanding in the last game. Every club will go through ups and downs and a period when it doesn’t seem to be right or consistent, but we need the fans to really support us in that. That’s when you’re a true fan. There will be some joy down the track, I can assure you that.”
Tomorrow will be Millward’s second game back after he missed three matches on compassionate leave.
Cas were crushed 42-4 at Huddersfield Giants eight days ago and their latest task is no easier, against a team who scored 58 points in their last outing.
“Hull are playing extremely well, their forwards are playing very well and I’ve been really impressed with [ex-Cas prop] Andy Lynch, I think he’s a good player,” Millward observed.
“We have to play well, but this is my first full week back. Last week I was in Tuesday and Thursday, but I feel there’s been a lot more intensity this week.
“A lot of intensity went out of the place while I was away, unfortunately. That would happen in any workplace with the boss away, but I feel we’ve been able to regain that this week.”
He added: “I’ve been really happy with the last two sessions and I’d like to see a lot of difference on Sunday.
“I don’t think our attack last week was great, our kicking game wasn’t great and that put a lot of pressure on our field position and defensively we conceded five tries down our right-hand side, so that was disappointing.”
Josh Griffin and Danny Orr are set to return from injury for Tigers and Oliver Holmes and Stuart Jones are in contention after being rested last week.
Lee Mitchell is rested and Joe Arundel drops out due to a recurrence of the shoulder injury he returned from at Huddersfield.
Hull could be unchanged from the win over Widnes last week, with Ben Crooks and Danny Nicklas both on stand-by.
Castleford Tigers: from Owen, Clare, McGoldrick, Dixon, Youngquest, Chase, Orr, Walker, Hudson, Millington, Ferres, Grehan, Snitch, Clark, Emmitt, Massey, Holmes, Jones, Griffin.
Hull: from McKinnon, Sharp, Martin, Turner, Briscoe, Horne, Seymour, Moa, Houghton, Lynch, Manu, Tickle, Aspinwall, Ellis, Bowden, Whiting, O’Carroll, Nicklas, Crooks.
Referee: Matthew Thomason (Warrington).
Kick-off: Tomorrow, 3.30pm.