Improvement is the main thing Castleford Tigers coach Ian Millward is looking for in Sunday’s derby at home to Leeds Rhinos.
Tigers went down 40-24 at Warrington Wolves in their opening Super League game of the season last week, after trailing 34-12 at the break with tries by Richard Owen and Jake Webster.
It was a stirring second half performance and Millward said: “We did enough good stuff in our first game to say there was some improvement.
“but we need to be really good because we are playing the World Club champions.
“I respect that more than anyone. We’re playing against the guy who won the Golden Boot (Kevin Sinfield) and I thought it was a nine out of 10 performance by Leeds last weekend, they really punished Hull, so there’s plenty to challenge us.”
Millward said he is “really happy with the progress”, but added: “We’re not going to be at the cutting edge just yet.
“What I want to see from the match tomorrow is an improvement on last week.
“It is a derby game and they mean a fair bit of passion.
“We are certainly not going to roll over, we are going to fight to the death.
“We are going to work really hard for each other, but I saw some really good signs last weekend.”
Starting well is a priority for Tigers after last week’s first half horror show.
“We had no ball early on and they blew us apart,” Millward reflected.
“In the second half I saw what I am looking for this season. There were some real positives to be had”