Castleford boss wants to utilise his squad in Easter games

Kevin Larroyer, who could make his debut for Castleford Tigers.
Kevin Larroyer, who could make his debut for Castleford Tigers.

Head coach Daryl Powell is aiming to make full use of his Castleford Tigers squad with two tough games looming over the Easter period.

Loaned out players Will Maher and Kevin Larroyer could be recalled for Monday’s game at St Helens with the latter possibly in line to make his debut for the club along with the recently signed Alex Foster if he can overcome injury in time to be in contention.

Vastly experience prop Andy Lynch is in line for a recall after being left out of the last two matches while Powell is hoping to have Grant Millington and Michael Shenton available again after injury ruled them out of last week’s game at Wigan to add to the 17 on duty at the DW Stadium.

When asked if he would be using his squad depth over Easter, Powell said: “Yes without a doubt.

“We have got a little bit of movement so we will look to get the best out of the squad over the two games.

“Potentially some of the players could come back who have been out on loan, but I will have a look at how we get through Friday’s game.

“We’ll get the first game out of the way and then we’ve got 24 or 48-hour call backs on the loan guys so we’ll see where we’re at.

“Alex Foster could come in for his first game, but won’t play on Friday.

“He’s had a bit of an injury to his pectoral muscle. It looks like it’s getting better and I’m hopeful he will be available for the St Helens game. Whether I’ll use him or not I’ll make the decision after Friday.”

Powell is going with his strongest possible line-up for the first of the Easter games against Wakefield.

He said: “Winning the first game is absolutely key and then you can build on that.

“Danny Orr’s having a look at Saints and myself and Ryan Sheridan are looking at Wakefield, that’s the priority, get that job done and see where we’re at as we move forward.”

Castleford will be looking to end their poor record at St Helens on Monday, but Powell hopes the pre-season win there will have got the monkey off their back for this fixture.

He said: “We beat them in pre-season and that’s why we took the game, it was important for us to go there and make sure that confidence wise we were in a better place.

“I don’t think there’s anything to fear, it’s just us, let’s get our game where it needs to be.

“The second game over Easter is always a difficult one, but I think we have been great managing Easter and I always talk positively about the challenge of Easter to the players. That won’t change.

“It’s important for a coach to speak positively about the challenges that players face.

“It will certainly be a tough game, but if we look after ourselves and play well we’re confident. It doesn’t matter where we go, we feel we can win games.”

Saints will be under new management after Keiron Cunningham left the club this week and Powell is sad to see the head coach depart.

He added: “It’s a tough one for Keiron, I’m good friends with him and it’s never nice to see someone losing their job.

“Obviously their initial challenge is taking Wigan on and it’s a massive, massive game for them, it is every single year.

“It will be an interesting game when we play them.”