FRIDAY’S TRIP to Widnes Vikings is a “must-win” game for Wakefield Trinity, according to coach Chris Chester.
Trinity are fifth in Betfred Super League and – depending on other results – a win this week could lift them as high as third.
With two rounds remaining in the regular season Wakefield trail second-placed Leeds Rhinos by four points, but are just two adrift of Salford Red Devils and one behind Hull.
The two sides above them face tough away games on Friday, at Castleford Tigers and Leeds respectively and Chester said his men need to take advantage of any slip-ups.
“We have got to win,” Chester said of Friday’s match.
“It is probably our most important game of the whole season now. They will be hurting from their thumping last week and it’s important we get into them early doors and put them off their game.
“They have got some good players, people like Rangi Chase and Rhys Hanbury, who can cause you problems, but it’s more about us and doing the things that have put us in this position.”
Chester said Trinity – who led 16-0 at half-time against Castleford last week before being pipped 25-24 – need to go into the Super-8s in good form.
“We are really confident we can give it a good crack,” he said of the final third of the season.
“We’ve got a squad that’s playing very well.
“We’ve got a strong, aggressive forward pack and some speed in the outside-backs – give them an inch and they’ll score from anywhere.
“We are are confident group. We were disappointed with the result last week, but we managed to keep Castleford scoreless for a half which nobody else has been able to do this year.
“We caused them some problems.
“We weren’t quite good enough to finish them off, but there were more positives than negatives.”
Chester, who was due to name his initial 19-man squad for the Widnes game this afternoon, is confident Jacob Miller and Danny Kirmond will be available for the start of the Super-8s.
Stand-off Jacob Miller has been out of action since suffering a broken leg in the win at Wigan Warriors on May 29 and Kirmond, Trinity’s captain, has missed the last six matches.
Chester said: “We would not want to risk them on Widnes’ artificial surface.
“It’s the wrong game to bring them back so they will probably be out another week.”
Prop Anthony England suffered an Achilles problem against Tigers, but Chester expects him to be given the all-clear.
He said: “He could not go back on, but we are hopeful and confident he will be available this week.”
Chester is also looking at making a signing ahead of the Super-8s. Forward Mikey Sio joined Halifax on loan last week, creating a space in the squad.
Chester confirmed: “We are hoping to bring another body in in the next 24 hours, which will give us a bit of a boost.”