Castleford Tigers need to be less reliant on stand-off Rangi Chase this campaign, boss Ian Millward believes.
Chase is the reigning Man of Steel, was selected for Exiles in last year’s mid-season Test and made his England debut at the end of the season.
Tigers were accused of being a one-man team at times last year and Millward accepts they must reduce their dependence on Chase this term, especially now other teams realise the threat he can pose.
“We need to do that, in case he has an injury,” admitted the coach, whose side visit Wakefield Trinity Wildcats on Sunday for their final pre-season game.
“The second thing is our ability to pose other threats across the field. I think if we can create a bit more consistent structure in attack that will help Rangi.
“Injury problems last year made it hard, but if you look at the stats he was in the top two carries in Super League, along with James Roby.
“He was in the top try assists and the top breaks – if you look at the other stats for the club, they were quite low.
“That’s why we’ve got to find more ways of maintaining the quality, but reducing the quantity. We need to do that for Rangi, because he is definitely going to draw more attention from other teams this year.”
Millward is confident the 25-year-old can handle the added pressure. He said: “His biggest problem will be understanding that he doesn’t have to do everything.
“Most good players want to do everything. He is still only young and people forget he hasn’t played stand-off all his life.
“In Australia he was being groomed as a hooker, so his belief is ‘if I am not touching it one in every six in attack I am being lazy’.
“We need to work on how does he read a game a little bit differently and how does he pick his moments a little bit better.”