DESPITE dropping to the bottom of the Stobart Super League after last weekend’s results head coach Ian Millward believes a win is not far away to kick start Castleford Tigers’ season.
Millward (pictured) was happy with elements of the Tigers’ display in their 42-28 defeat to Hull and reckons there was plenty to build on if they can cut out the errors that have blighted the campaign so far.
Cas now face another tricky home match against a Hull KR team fresh from victory over leaders Huddersfield, but are going into tonight’s game with belief that their season and luck is about to turn.
Millward told the Express: “We’re very positive going into the game.
“It was a very positive performance against Hull last week and we’re looking forward to Friday.
“If we go with that attitude and that performance we’ve got a great chance of winning.
“They’re coming off the back of a good win and will be confident, but we’re concentrating on what we can do best.
“It was a great atmosphere last week and we’re looking forward to the same again.
“The fans were great in the way they got behind the team and I think they appreciated the effort they put in. They could see that we’re not far off.”
Millward felt his side was hard done to by the final score against Hull as he saw plenty of positives to come out of the game.
He said: “We played with some energy and there was a lot of commitment. We were much better than the previous week and we just need to get a bit more clinical.
“We are just relieving the pressure too many times with some errors that are costing us points.
“But if we can keep with the same attitude and improve our consistency there will be wins down the track.
“I can’t question the guys’ effort, but I’ve got to improve some of the naivety.
“We are quite naïve at times the way we give away some ball or the way we defend.
“I thought the scoreline didn’t reflect the effort and if you look at Peter Gentle’s comments and the Hull players they thought it was pretty hard.
“Some decisions went against us and we were looking for a bit of luck as well that didn’t go our way. But that happens, hopefully it turns around during the year.
“We should have had a penalty when Kirk Dixon was knocked off the ball. We stopped and they ran, we never got set and they scored in the corner. It was an eight-point game at that time and a big turning point.
“If it had happened in the street the bloke would have got arrested.
“But we can talk as much as want about the decisions, we can’t bring the game back.”
The Castleford coach praised the performance of several of his players who did not deserve to be on the losing side.
Millward said: “Rangi Chase was involved in all our tries and he was strong as was Danny Orr. Our halves both had great games and they led very strongly - we have got to continue that.
“It was a great piece of skill from Grant Millington for his try. He came off the bench and improved our performance.
“He’s coming back from injury, but is progressing fine and made an impact when he came on.
“People have to understand that we have had a lot of players in rehab and they’re coming back. It takes a little while for them to get their confidence also.
“Jimmy Grehan did okay at centre. The pace of the game caught up with him at times and he got tired at the end, but he’s getting there.
“He’s definitely in the mix to play at centre again this week.”
The Tigers will once again be without centre Joe Arundel for the Hull KR game, along with long term injury victims Craig Huby and Paul Jackson, but there are no new injuries and Millward said all the other squad players have been in contention for a place in the final 17.
However, the 19-man squad announced on Wednesday saw just one change from the Hull FC game with second row forward Lee Mitchell, rested last week, back in at the expense of young winger James Clare.
There is still no room for former England Academy players Adam Milner and Jordan Thompson, who both played in the under 20s last week along with prop Steve Nash and back rower John Davies.
The full 19-man squad is: Owen, Youngquest, Dixon, Griffin, Chase, Orr, Emmitt, Clark, Ferres, Walker, Snitch, Jones, Hudson, Mitchell, Millington, Holmes, Massey, McGoldrick, Grehan.