Castleford Tigers eye only one potential new recruit in the close season

Castleford Tigers director of rugby, Jon Wells. PIC: James Hardisty
Castleford Tigers director of rugby, Jon Wells. PIC: James Hardisty
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CASTLEFORD TIGERS are looking to make one signing ahead of the new Betfred Super League season, but director of rugby Jon Wells insists he and coach Daryl Powell are happy with their existing squad.

Tigers begin pre-season training next Monday and are the only top-flight club who have yet to announce any recruitment for the 2019 campaign.

Castleford Tigers head coach, Daryl Powell. PIC: Matthew Merrick

Castleford Tigers head coach, Daryl Powell. PIC: Matthew Merrick

Gadwin Springer, Jy Hitchcox, Jake Webster, James Green and Quentin Laulu-Togaga’e have all moved on from Castleford’s 2018 squad and Wells told the club’s website: “There certainly won’t be wholesale changes and the emphasis right now is on finding possibly one more addition if we can.

“We’re constantly looking to do that, but we very much like this squad and believe it does have the potential to challenge for trophies, irrespective of whether new recruits arrive or not.”

Castleford’s ranks were strengthened during the past season when they brought in former Hull prop Liam Watts and full-back Peter Mata’utia from Leigh Centurions.

“The signings of Liam and Peter were considered and thought out and the club paid significant transfer fees to do our business,” Wells reflected.

Tigers believe in-season signings, including Liam Watts, coupled with other players returning from injury make next season's Cas squad stronger without making too many additions.

Tigers believe in-season signings, including Liam Watts, coupled with other players returning from injury make next season's Cas squad stronger without making too many additions.

“They have added a great deal to this squad and with the benefit of a full pre-season in our environment at Castleford we’re confident we will continue to step up in 2019.

“We are working within the constraints of a salary-capped sport and you’ve seen a number of key players such as Jake [Trueman] sign new and upgraded contracts and that consistency in the squad can be a real strength.”

He added: “What we do have here is a deep squad.

“With the likes of Luke Gale, Alex Foster, Greg Minikin, Greg Eden and Matt Cook fit and healthy again after missing large parts of last season through injury we have every right to be excited about the players we already have.

“We are looking to further strengthen the squad if the right player becomes available, but Daryl and I are also very happy with what’s already in place.”

Wells confirmed conditioner Ben Cooper has left the club with his assistant Jamie Bell stepping up to take over.