Castleford Tigers star Oliver Holmes admits he will upset some of his mates whatever the outcome of tomorrow’s big derby against Wakefield Trinity at the Mend-A-Hose Jungle.
The former Normanton Knights junior has friends on both sides of the Wakefield divide so expects to get stick and congratulations in equal measure if Cas can maintain their 100 per cent home record.
He told the Express: “I’m a local lad for both clubs, I live between Cas and Wakey so a lot of my friends that I grew up with are Wakefield fans as well as Cas fans and I get a fair bit of stick off them building into these games.
“I love playing in this game – it’s special for me.
“A few of the lads haven’t played in the Wakefield derby and I’ll let them know what it’s like and about the atmosphere to expect.
“It’s going to be a big crowd, it’s over Easter and it’s always good to play in the atmosphere that this ground generates.
“I can see Wakey bringing a fair few over and we are looking at another sell-out, fingers crossed.”
Holmes expects Cas to be tested by their local rivals: “It’s going to be a tough game, they are playing really well at the moment and have won three out of their last three.
“They’ll be confident to come to Cas to knock us off and it will be a big old challenge for us, but it’s one we’re looking forward to.
“It’s good for the sport in this area that both teams are doing well and really progressing the way we are.
“It makes it an even bigger game and there’s more at stake with it. If Wakefield are looking at top four that directly affects where we want to be in that table.”
Holmes hopes to overcome a niggling knee injury to play in tomorrow afternoon’s match and aims to add to a good try record against Wakefield.
If selected it will be his third game back after missing the start of the season through injury and he is delighted to be back in the swing of things.
He said: “I’ve had a couple of games back now. I played 50 minutes first game and 66 second and I’ve come through with flying colours.
“I’m looking forward to the rest of the season now after it was frustrating to miss the start.
“It’s always a hard time when you’re injured. You’re away from the squad, you’re not training and not always with the boys, being out doing your rehab wherever. But being back out with the lads is really enjoyable.”
Holmes is pleased to have come back into a side that is top of the table.
He added: “That obviously helps. You come back into a team that’s playing really well, only lost one game and knocked off the rest of them.
“Coming back into that environment where it’s really positive and the lads are enjoying themselves helps a lot.
“I think our average score per game is around the 40 mark so we’re really playing some good stuff. Hopefully that will continue on Friday. I don’t see why we can’t, if we play to our ability. I think it’s more about us than it is about Wakefield.”