Luke Gale’s absence after he went off injured at Hull affected Castleford Tigers more than it should have done, according to head coach Daryl Powell.
Scrum-half Gale suffered concussion in a 22nd minute incident in which Hull’s Liam Watts was sent off and subsequently banned for two matches.
He was unable to return during the match and will now have to pass a mandatory head test before being cleared to return to action.
With no Rangi Chase on the bench because of a wrist injury Cas had to switch Paul McShane into half-back with further shuffling around in the forwards and Tigers boss Powell admitted his side missed their playmaker out in the middle.
“Losing Luke Gale impacted on us, no doubt, but it shouldn’t have done.
“It shouldn’t have impacted us on as much as it did. Obviously he’s a key player for us, but we had a man extra and Paul McShane has played in the halves a fair bit before.
“It shouldn’t have been a major issue.
“We missed the smartness he gives us. We couldn’t quite get our combinations together.
“We looked untidy and the amount of errors we made was always going to hurt us.
“I expected us to win the game from the spot we were in, but we didn’t handle losing Luke well at all and I thought our discipline was poor at times - this is an area we certainly need to improve.”
Powell does not know if Gale will be able to return to the side against Wigan this Saturday.
He added: “He is all right, he said he was fine after the game, but it’s a short turnaround so it will be pretty close.
“We will wait and see. He got whacked on the head and those assessments are pretty stringent at the moment. It all depends on whether he passes the head test.”