PROBLEMS behind the scenes have brought Castleford Tigers closer together as a team, according to veteran prop Andy Lynch.
Tigers winger Justin Carney has been suspended by the club during an investigation into alleged off-field behaviour and asked how the situation has affected team spirit, Lynch said: “If anything, it has made us closer.
“Everyone wants to get out on that field and work for each other to get the results.”
Tigers face a must-win game tomorrow, at home to St Helens in the First Utility Super-8s. Defeat would effectively end their semi-final hopes and Lynch admitted: “It’s semi-final football every week now and we’ve got to win all three of the matches to come.
“We can’t worry about what other teams around us are doing, it’s all on us and we’ve got to win our games.”
It is a tall order, after successive defeats, but Lynch insisted: “We’ve trained really well and everyone’s in a confident mood. We’re all looking forward to St Helens and we’re excited about the game.
“We had a great atmosphere down here the last time we played them, when we won with that dramatic last point and we’re looking forward to another good night.
“Any way we can get a win over them will be great. Saints have found some form again, as they showed in beating Leeds, so it will be tough, but we feel we can do it.”
Of Saints, Lynch added: “They can score from anywhere.
“They’ve got good players all round the field and showed against Leeds last week what a dangerous side they can be.
“I don’t think anyone should write Saints off. They are a physical side and it’s always a battle against a side with the likes of Alex Walmsley, Kyle Amor, Louie McCarthy-Scarsbrook and Mose Masoe.
“You want to play against the best week-in and week-out and it’s great to test yourself against these players. It will be a tough game, but I know if we get our game right we are in with a chance. We definitely believe we can win. We had a bit of a slow start to the season, but as it has gone on we’ve got stronger and shown we’ve got quality in the side.”
Forward Nathan Massey and centre Jake Webster will not play again this season due to injury, the club have confirmed.
Massey is facing surgery on a broken scaphoid, and Webster has nerve damage.
Tigers will be without Matt Cook after the RFL disciplinary committee banned him for one match for a Grade B reckless strike on Luke Robinson in last week’s defeat at Huddersfield. Cook pleaded guilty. Oliver Holmes (illness) and Michael Shenton (dislocated shoulder) are set to return.