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Castleford Tigers: Dream Team snub is extra motivation says Powell

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WILY BOSS Daryl Powell will use Castleford Tigers’ Dream Team snub as extra motivation for their Betfred Super League semi-final.

Despite finishing third in the table, no Tigers players were selected for the team which does include John Bateman and Sean O’Loughlin from tomorrow’s hosts Wigan Warriors.

Daryl Powell.

Daryl Powell.

Powell said: “It’s interesting we haven’t had any stand-out players, but ended up third.

“It is what it is. Last year we had a whole heap of players in. It’s disappointing I think for individual players, but then again it’s another motivation for me. We just use everything we have got.”

Bateman has also been shortlisted for the Man of Steel award, along with St Helens’ Ben Barba and James Roby.

“We’ve had Jake Trueman nominated as young player of the year, but nothing else,” Powell added.

Castleford's Paul McShane.

Castleford's Paul McShane.

“I think Paul McShane in particular can really look at that and be pretty disappointed, but we’ve had other top performers as well. It’s disappointing, but you use everything you have got at your disposal.”

Second-placed Wigan have beaten Tigers twice at DW Stadium this year and will go into tomorrow’s game as favourites. Much of the build-up has centred around departing coach Shaun Wane and players who are leaving including Sam Tomkins and Bateman.

Powell said: “I’m not really interested about that, for us it doesn’t really matter does it?

“We just have to go and play well. There’ll be a fair bit of emotion flying about and it’s more about cool heads for me.

“If we can keep ourselves nice and calm and play our game then we have every chance.”

He stressed: “We’re confident, but we know it will be tough. They have won pretty much every game there so it is going to be a big challenge, but it doesn’t matter. None of what has happened matters.

“It’s just about which players can deliver the best game on the night and hopefully it will be us.”

Meanwhile, Trueman will miss tomorrow’s semi-final after he succumbed to the hand injury suffered in last week’s loss at St Helens, while Junior Moors also remains sidelined.

Captain Michael Shenton is named in the 19-man squad, Oli Holmes returns, Greg Eden and Mike McMeeken are also included after being rested last week and Matt Cook also makes a surprise appearance in Powell’s initial squad.