WHITE-HOT CASTLEFORD Tigers can get even better, Paul McShane reckons.
Tigers ran in 12 tries in a 66-10 thrashing of Leeds Rhinos on Thursday night and McShane said: “We are over the moon with it. We are really focused at the moment on what we want to do as a team and I think that focus is showing out on the field.
“We have still got a few timing issues and things like that and maybe when the grounds harden up a bit, you never know - we might get better. But we are happy with where we are at the minute and keeping those good performances going is key for us.”
With 20 games still to play before the competition splits into Super-8s and Qualifiers, McShane stressed Tigers can’t afford to get carried away.
“Hopefully, we can keep this form going,” he said. “It’s something we want to do, but it’s about keeping our focus on what we want to achieve as a team.”
Tigers have scored 140 points in their opening three Betfred Super League games and Rhinos coach Brian McDermott described their performance against Leeds as one of the most clinical attacking displays he has seen.
We are happy with where we are at the minute and keeping those good performances going is key for us.Castleford Tigers’ Paul McShane
But McShane insisted Tigers are sometimes surprising themselves with their ability to turn defence into attack and score from anywhere on the pitch.
“Half the time we are just saying ‘let’s complete this set’ and two plays later we are 60 metres upfield,” he said. “I think it’s just us having the confidence to play, backing our skill and we worked hard on that all pre-season.”
Tigers were without Rangi Chase and Ben Roberts against Leeds, so McShane - a specialist hooker - returned from suspension at stand-off.
“I was gutted to miss last week, so I’d have been happy to play anywhere,” he said. “As a team we understand how we want to play and that makes my job a lot easier if I have to fill in there. It was a team performance and I was just part of that.”
McShane spent five seasons at Leeds and expects them to turn things around. He said: “They are class, they have won two games this year and people are writing them off, which is stupid. They’ve got players missing so they’re definitely going to bounce back.”