Fans will bring 'the soul' back to Super League says Castleford Tigers coach Daryl Powell ahead of Hull KR showdown
Castleford Tigers coach Daryl Powell has pledged rugby league will never again take supporters for granted.
Powell reckons the “soul” will return to Betfred Super League when the turnstiles reopen tomorrow (Monday).
Tigers staged this country’s last Super League game in front of a crowd when they beat St Helens on March 15 last year.
The sport was suspended the following day and all games in this country have been played behind closed doors since Super League resumed last August.
Social distancing rules have restricted capacity at the Jungle to 3,600 for Monday’s visit of Hull KR, but Powell said having fans back will be a “blessed relief”.
"It will be fantastic seeing people in a stadium again,” he enthused.
"It has been not quite soul-destroying, but it hasn't been great.
“There's not a lot of soul about stadiums without people in and we will get the soul back and the actual feel of the game and the noise.
"I know fans will be super-excited and players and coaches are as well.
"I think we've taken fans for granted over the years because they've always been there.
"Certainly, I don't think anybody will do it again."
Powell reckons his players are looking forward to tomorrow as much as the fans.
He added: "People have just missed it.
"I think it will lift everybody, both sets of players will get lifted.
"I just think it will be great, I can't wait for it.
"It seems like you just can't remember fans being in, it has been that long.
“It should be great just to get people in again and to get a buzz about the place will be fantastic.
"I am really looking forward to that.”
Powell knows the party mood will be spoiled if Tigers play poorly or don’t win the game.
He said: "Sporting teams are part of the fabric of the community and people believe in their sports organisation so much, especially if they're doing well.
"We've started off pretty well and we want to continue that.
"It will only lift [the fans] if we win, so there's a responsibility there on our shoulders that we get a performance and get this result, for them as much as anything."
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