PLEASED BOSS Daryl Powell hailed Castleford Tigers’ “superb” response to their Tetley’s Challenge Cup final disappointment, writes PETER SMITH.
Tigers climbed to second place in First Utility Super League after a 32-18 home win over Bradford Bulls yesterday at the Mend-A-Hose Jungle, just eight days on from their Wembley cup final loss to Leeds Rhinos.
Tigers led 24-6 at half-time, but Bulls closed the gap to six points before Daryl Clark scored a try out of nothing to seal the points.
Powell said: “I thought we worked really hard.
“It was always going to be a tough game, after a Challenge Cup final and a loss as well.
“It takes a bit of responding and I thought the boys were superb.
“Even when we didn’t play as well as we’d have liked in the second half there was a fair bit of character about the team.
“We held firm, though I thought we could have been a bit smarter at times.
“There were some really good pieces of play from us in the first half, but we lost our way and we got rattled at the start of the second half.
“But the key thing was we won the game.
“It was absolutely paramount that we got the two points and it puts us in a great position.
“We have got a couple of tough games, but we’ve got something in front of us that we would certainly have taken at the start of the year.”
Tigers are the only team who could still overhaul league leaders St Helens and wins in their final two games, at home to Wakefield Trinity Wildcats and away against Catalan Dragons, would guarantee second place.
Powell admitted that was beyond his expectations at the start of the year.
“We need to hold our nerve,” he said.
“We’ve got a tough finish, but we’ve got an opportunity to finish either one or two, which is incredibly really.”
Meanwhile, winger Danny Williams – who was part of Bulls’ team yesterday – has signed a contract keeping him at Bradford until the end of 2016.
The 27-year-old Leeds Rhinos academy product, who had a short-term spell with Tigers in 2007, joined Bradford Bulls on loan from Salford Red Devils.
Bulls have confirmed former St Helens and Hull winger Jamie Foster will leave at the end of the season.