Castleford Tigers skipper Michael Shenton is pleased to have made a successful return to injury after missing almost the whole of the 2016 season.
Shenton has started every Betfred Super League game so far for the Tigers and shown no ill effects from the cruciate ligament injury that sidelined him last year.
He has formed another impressive left edge partnership with winger Greg Eden, full-back Zak Hardaker and half-back Luke Gale and is enjoying his rugby in what has been a scintillating start to the campaign for Castleford.
“There’s some bits I am frustrated with, but the majority I am pretty happy with,” said Shenton.
“It feels good, I am not missing any training or games so I am happy with that. I just want to keep playing consistent and keep improving and improving my partnerships with Zak and Greg Eden as well.
“There’s bits of improvement in there and we are chopping and changing our back-row at the moment, now Olly Holmes is back in and Grant Millington had a bit of a spell there.
“It’s just keeping on our toes and developing bits. Our game develops all the time, I just want to keep consistent and aim to get better each week.”
Shenton was pleased to see the Tigers’ right edge shine against Huddersfield:
“At the weekend our right edge was on fire so it was one of those when you have to keep running your stuff, but just sit back and admire what the right edge were doing.
“All four of them were superb and I think that’s a good improvement in the team this year - we’ve got strike in the middle, on the left edger and the right edge.
“To defend this team you have to defend well right across the park.”
Castleford have been widely praised for the style of their performances so far, but Shenton believes no-one at the club will get carried away believing all the hype.
He added: “We try not to focus on that. You don’t want the boys getting too carried away. It means nothing so far.
“If you fall away now it’d be a big, massive disappointment and then you get a lot of stick off the media.
“It’s important we keep it going and keep playing well, especially coming into the kind of period we’ve got coming up after Wigan.
“That’s a massive game and Wigan is the focus, but if we win this we could be in a great place moving forward.
“It’s a big challenge and one everyone’s excited for.
“Daryl has spoken a lot about changing the way people look at the game and play the game and the way the British game should be played.
“I think we’ve got a great model how we play. You see bits of our game in other teams now which is awesome.
“We are an exciting team to watch, but we work hard on that kind of stuff. Everyone does their job well.
“Defence is what has made us more of a contender this year. I think we’ve always been able to entertain people and score good tries, but the nitty gritty of defence - the attitude stuff - that’s where the big improvement has been this year.”