FIFTH SPOT at the end of the regular First Utility Super League season is a “good effort”, according to Castleford Tigers coach Daryl Powell.
Tigers won 58-20 at Wakefield Trinity Wildcats yesterday, but – with one round remaining – trail fourth-placed Huddersfield Giants on points difference. Huddersfield are at home to Wakefield next Sunday, when Tigers play host to sixth-placed Warrington Wolves, who are four points back.
“On points difference we’re not going to be able to get Huddersfield, so that’s disappointing, but we are still in a pretty good spot,” Powell said.
“If we can beat Warrington I’d see it as equal fourth and I think that’s a great effort.”
Tigers ran in 10 tries yesterday, nine of them converted by Luke Gale and Powell said: “For most of the game I thought we were very good.
“I thought when we had the ball in good field position we looked really sharp. We were able to execute some really smart plays in the second half, but it is slightly concerning that we lose control for periods in the game.
“We need to grab it back a bit quicker. You’re always going to have periods when the opposition has got some ascendency about them, but I thought they scored a couple of tries too many.”
Tigers lost in-form winger Denny Solomona in the first half and Powell said: “It is a syndesmosis injury, which is what they call a sprained ankle now. It’s a tough injury for him; he’ll be, I’d imagine, three or four weeks, at minimum.”
Wakefield boss Brian Smith accepted the blame for his team’s performance.
He said: “We had some good moments, but not as many as we’ve been having in other games.
“We let ourselves down pretty badly early on in the game and things got worse. There’s a lot of people have got to be accountable, the players themselves have got to be accountable, but so have I. I made lots of changes, trying to discover what might be our best line-up and trying to give everybody in the club a crack at showing what they can do. We had some guys who were well below their best.”
Wildcats full-back Kevin Locke needed hospital treatment to what Smith said was a “serious arm and chest injury”, which could be season-ending.