England selections show how far Castleford have come

Zak Hardaker, one of three Castleford Tigers players selected in the England squad.
Zak Hardaker, one of three Castleford Tigers players selected in the England squad.

Having more of their players picked for England than any other Super League Club shows how far Castleford Tigers have progressed in recent years, says head coach Daryl Powell.

The Tigers saw three players, full-back Zak Hardaker, scrum-half Luke Gale and back rower Mike McMeeken called up by England this week for the Test match against Samoa in Australia next month.

An agreement was put in place to restrict the number of players to three from any one club, but Castleford are the only club to have three chosen in the 20-man squad.

“It shows how far we’ve come and for us to have more players than anyone else in the international squad - I’m not sure that’s ever happened before,” said Cas boss Powell.

“I’m obviously pretty proud. It’s a game against Samoa, but still players getting recognised for potentially being capable of representing their country in the World Cup has to be a big plus for the club.

“It’s good for recruitment moving forward. You want to sign good players and players with potential that can get to play at the highest level. They can now see they can do that at Castleford.

“If we can help people to achieve that status then it’s great for us all.

“We’ve got a lot of good players and there could have been more selected if it wasn’t restricted to three - but we just need to get them all playing well at the moment and that’s the most important thing.

“The three chosen have all been great this year and I’m really delighted for them. Hopefully they will all go over there and represent the club in a great way - and I’m confident they will.”