Castleford Tigers: Fozzie aiming to exit with a roar

Veteran Castleford Tigers prop Nick Fozzard will be giving everything he has got this year – whether it is his swan song or not.

The former Great Britain and Yorkshire hard man joined Tigers in the off-season on a one-year and, at 33, he knows his time as a full-time professional is coming to an end.

"I am treating it as my last year, so I want to finish on a real good note," Fozzard vowed..

"But the other side of that is, if I do have a really good year I am going to want to play again!

"I am going to put all my effort in. I'm not going to hold back and I'm going to have a real crack at it."

Fozzard's career has been spent entirely at the top-level, beginning with Leeds Rhinos in 1993.

He joined Huddersfield Giants four years later and had spells at Warrington Wolves, St Helens and Hull KR, before a return to Saints last season.

He has been involved in sides that have won all available honours, but he insisted joining Tigers – who missed out on the play-offs last term – is far from a step down.

"It is a really good team here," he stated. "They have signed well and they've got a really good squad.

"Being from Wakefield I know what sort of club Cas is. It is a real family club and that's what I want.

"I want to enjoy my rugby for the rest of my career and I think this is the right place to do it.

"I think it's a tough club and it will bring out the best in me."

Fozzard sees Cas as a club "on the up".

He said: "It is a good atmosphere to play in. The fans really get behind you, there's good support and I think it's a big club that's just waiting to explode, just like Warrington did and what Hull

Kingston Rovers should be doing soon as well.

"We are just underneath that top-four and I think the club's ready to get a lot bigger."

Of Tigers' immediate aims for this season, Fozzard said: "I think everybody's the same, you want to get into that top-eight.

"Even the teams that win it, the first thing is to get into the top-eight.

"That is what we are aiming for and it would be great to have a good run in the Challenge Cup as well.

"I think the fans deserve a day out, it would be good for them and good for us as players as well.

"You can start with the best intentions in the world, but you have to play well and see how you go.

"Our first game is against Wakey at Cardiff. We have got to start well and see what happens.

"Danny Orr and Richie Mathers have come in and the people they've recruited know all about the game, they've done a lot and they are good

to have around.

"They will be good for the kids as well."

Fozzard is delighted to have moved back to his roots. "It is great," he

said of his return to West Yorkshire.

"It cuts down on the travelling a lot – it's only about 20 minutes from my house to the ground.

"And I'm back among Yorkshiremen, which is nice.

"Not that I didn't bond well with people on the other side of the Pennines, but I feel like I am home.

"I am really enjoying it. I go home with a smile on my face every day, so my wife's pleased."

Meanwhile, coach Terry Matterson has confirmed he will name his 2011 captain after Sunday's trial game at home to Hull.

Ryan Hudson skippered the team last year, but Matterson said: "He doesn't play the full game and I'm considering whether to make a change, to someone who is on the field for the full game."

Tigers came through the trial game against Batley Bulldogs two days ago with no new injuries.