Fans look like having to wait to see Ryan Bailey in a Castleford Tigers team after head coach Daryl Powell argued against throwing the club’s new signing straight in against Salford Red Devils this Sunday.
Powell is delighted with the signing of the 31-year-old former Leeds Rhinos prop forward on a deal until the end of the season - with a two-year further option - but feels the player will need time to bed down with his new team-mates.
He told the Express: “I wouldn’t consider Ryan for this weekend, he needs to get a good look at us and for us to get a good look at him and then we’ll make a decision leading into the Catalans game.
“I’m not to sure about his fitness yet. He trained with us the other day and seemed to be okay. Ben Cooper said he did a good job in the session he did with him early in the week.
“I suppose we’ll find out as we get through the next couple of weeks.”
Powell explained the reasoning behind signing the player.
He said: “It’s something that came up last week. I sat down with him and had chat about what his motivations were and what he wanted to do.
“It’s a perfect signing for us, half-way through the season.
“We’re in a pretty good position, we’re in the top eight, just, and I think having someone like Ryan will give us a bit of impetus and a bit of a push.
“It will add pressure across the whole squad because some of our performances have clearly not been good enough.
“Adding another player is going to be beneficial for us.
“His experience is good and he adds a bit of something that perhaps we haven’t got a massive amount of in the squad. He’s got a bit of an edge about him the way that he plays and if he can bring that and be a positive figure around the club then he’ll be pretty big for us.
“He’s said he’s got something to prove and that always helps. He’ll be looking to get a contract for the future and that really adds to what they are going to bring to the club.
“Having sat down with him I’m really confident that he’s going to be very positive for us.”