CASTLEFORD Tigers coach Terry Matterson continues to be pleased with the development of his young first team stars.
Six of the 17-man squad that helped the Tigers defeat Harlequins 56-24 last Sunday were youngsters to come out of the club’s academy in the last two years with the average age of the team only just over 24.
Four of the youngsters – Richard Owen, Jordan Thompson Adam Milner and Daryl Clark – scored tries while 20-year-old prop forward Jonathan Walker was making his first team comeback after three months out with a serious knee injury that required surgery.
Centre Joe Arundel did not score on this occasion, but remains a model of consistency and an ever present in the first team this season.
Matterson declared himself happy with the performances of all the young players in their latest Super League outing and was particularly pleased for 19-year-old Thompson, who has played in the pack in the last two weeks to add another string to his bow.
He said: “Jordan Thompson made an impact when he came on. I thought he really added some punch, some whack in his defence and he’s coming along nicely.
“He finished on the wing, but he has played in the forwards in the last two weeks and we see his future in the pack.
“He’s able to do a job out wide, which is a really good attribute, but he’s strong down the middle as well and he gives us a bit of steel. We’re just looking for some consistency from Jordan now.
“Adam Milner and Daryl Clark are continuing to do well in the hooker role, but they are under some pressure to perform. Raz (Ryan Hudson) was left out against Harlequins so there’s real competition for that spot in the team.
“They have to perform well every week and that’s good for them at their age, they know they have to perform to keep the spot and they’re responding, they’re doing really well.”