WAKEFIELD Wildcats full-back Richard Mathers says he has nothing to prove to parent club Castleford Tigers when the sides meet on Good Friday.
Mathers is on a season-long loan at the Rapid Solicitors Stadium from Castleford but is allowed to play in the red, white and blue when the sides meet for the first time this season.
It’s an unusual situation for the 28-year-old to find himself in, especially with a potential return to the Tigers at the end of the campaign, but Mathers is just focusing on an important Easter weekend double-header for Wakefield in Super League.
“It’s another game at the start of an important period for us,” he said.
“Easter’s a gruelling period anyway irrespective of who it is, it’s the first game of Easter and it’s important.
“I played in the corresponding fixtures last year and I know what it means to the people of both clubs. You take the emotions out of it, we’re professional players and you’ve just got to do your job out there. I don’t have a point to prove to anyone other than my coaching staff and my team mates.”
Wakefield’s ever-present will be fully focused on trying to bag two points for his current club but has happy memories of his first season as a Tiger last term and will be going face-to-face with some good friends in gold and black.
“Very much so,” he said in response to being asked if he enjoyed last season at Castleford.
“Terry Matterson’s a great coach and Andy Hay [assistant]. We had a great group of players last year and we had a great time. We had a good season last year, we were sat in the top-four for quite a lot of the time up until Easter and it was quite a successful team so I only have happy memories from last season.
“I speak to the majority of the lads. They’re former team mates for this season but I’m still contracted there for next year so I keep in touch and you do make friendships when you play with your team mates.”
Mathers played in front of almost 8,000 supporters at the weekend and helped Wakefield to their first home win of the season against Catalan Dragons.
It was an impressive figure - 2,693 up on the same fixture last year - and Mathers is hoping the game against the Tigers, the club’s next home fixture, will be a sell-out.
“Hopefully we can get a sell-out crowd down here,” he said.
“We’ve had some fantastic attendances, they’re way up on last year and in previous seasons, we’ve had just under 8,000 supporters with no Catalan supporters so that shows that the club’s striving off the field.
“I know Castleford fans travel well so with the thriving start that the club have made off the field this year to add to that, if Cas brings good numbers we could get a sell-out.”
lWildcats say seated tickets are “extremely limited” and anyone wanting to buy tickets in the Centre or Eric France East Stand are advised to purchase them as soon as possible.
Fans are also being advised to buy their tickets for anywhere in the ground sooner rather than later to avoid missing out.
Tickets cost from £20 adults and £12 juniors and concessions. They can be bought by visiting the Wildcats retail outlet in the Ridings, at the Rapid Solicitors Stadium box office, by calling 01924 201548 or visiting the Wildcats official online ticket site.
Visit www.wakefieldexpress.co.uk on Saturday for the thoughts of Mathers ahead of Saturday’s trip to London Broncos.