Castleford boss excited by his Boxing Day squad mix

Greg Eden, playing for Castleford Tigers in the Boxing Day game against Hull.
Greg Eden, playing for Castleford Tigers in the Boxing Day game against Hull.

Castleford Tigers will field their strongest possible team when they get back into action in the Boxing Day game with Hull FC at the Mend-A-Hose Jungle.

A number of players will miss the game through injuries carried over from last season, but all the new signings will play some part in a match in which the new Harrison-Bryan Memorial Trophy is up for grabs.

Kick-off is 1.30pm and head coach Daryl Powell is excited by the prospect of seeing some of his top players in action alongside some youngsters who have been impressing in pre-season training.

He told the Express: “I have named a 27-man squad and it’s pretty strong, particularly the starting team.

“The new boys are in there. Zak Hardaker will play as will Jesse Sene-Lefao, Greg Eden, Tuoyo Egodo and Daniel Igbinedion.

“Michael Shenton will also play and it will be good to have the captain back.

“The starting 13 will be really strong and then we will see where that takes us in terms of rotation.

“There will be quite a few youngsters who will get a chance because we won’t take a risk with any of the players who are carrying injuries. There’s some really young players in there like Callum McLelland, who’s very young and has been training with us. He’s a half-back I really like the look of and he will come on.

“Hopefully Tom Holmes is going to be okay to play and that will be a really good young partnership if they are on the field together.

“It will be really exciting for us as a club seeing two young half-backs who look real good quality players. But there will be young players in all positions.”

Powell is delighted with the way preparations are going for the Boxing Day game and for the new Super League season.

He said: “Training’s going really well. We’re into the seventh week now and there’s a great attitude from everybody.

“The boys are working really hard and there’s a belief we are in a good place for all sorts of reasons.

“Nathan Massey’s back in full training, Junior Moors is more or less in full training and Tom Holmes is not far off.

“Joel Monaghan is advanced, but not quite back in full training. Andy Lynch is still not in full contact, but he is progressing his training work load. So we’re getting a number back and we’ve got a few who are progressing, but not quite into the team work.”