PACK LEADER Grant Millington expects to be fit for Betfred Super League round one, despite picking up a knock in Castleford Tigers’ 26-24 pre-season win at Leeds Rhinos two days ago.
The front-rower confirmed he “popped a rib” early in the game, but said the injury is unlikely to keep him out of action when Catalans Dragons visit the Jungle on Friday, February 1.
The win at Leeds – in Kallum Watkins’ testimonial game – was the first time many of Tigers’ senior squad had played since last October’s Super-8s semi-final defeat at Wigan Warriors.
Cas led 18-4 after half an hour before Leeds got back into the contest, but Millington reckons Tigers will benefit from the game time.
“It was good,” he reflected.
“For a lot of our squad it was the first hit-out we’ve had so it was good to get out there and really be tested.
“It was really quick in that first 10-15 minutes and I think it was what we needed to roll into the start of the season.”
Castleford were on the defensive for most of the second half, but Millington stressed: “Leeds are a good side.
“They have the ability to do that, but at the same time I think we have to control the game a bit better.
“We made a few errors on top of errors and against a side like Leeds, who have the ability to play fast and at you, you can’t give them that opportunity.
“With a bit more control in our game and a bit more patience I think we could have really kicked on in the second half.”
Coach Daryl Powell described his side’s first-half performance, when they scored four tries, as “outstanding”.
Millington said: “I got caught down the short side with Kallum Watkins in front of me and that’s never ideal!
“They are good at picking that sort of stuff, but we were good. We felt really solid defensively which we’ve worked a lot on.
“It is good to see all the work we’ve done come through in that first half, but we want to be able to do that for 80 minutes.
“We will pick that game apart and see what we can take out of it.”