ROCHDALE Hornets coach John Stankevitch has warned Castleford Tigers to expect their defence to be asked some serious questions in their Carnegie Challenge Cup fourth round tie at Spotland on Sunday.
The Championship One club have improved after a difficult start to the season and after climbing up to third place in their division have their eyes on a prize Super League scalp.
“Our lads won’t need any extra motivation to go out and do their best,” said Stankevitch.
“Cas are flying in the league and they’ve had a great start to the season and we know it will be a very tough game. We can either go into the game fearful about what they can do to us or we go out there trying to stick to our game plan and ignore what happens on the pitch, but I think it will probably be a little bit of both.
“We need to get the ball down and ask some questions of their defence every time we get the ball. Super League sides train every day and come up against all sorts of opposition so they’ll have seen every type of attack out there, but we need to upset them and try to play a little off-the-cuff rugby and cause them problems wherever possible.
“I’ve got a hungry bunch of players here who play to their max every week and I know there will be no difference against the Tigers.”
While Stankevitch knows Castleford will start favourites, he will be telling his troops that anything is possible and will be drawing from personal experience to try to inspire his side.
He added: “You never know what will happen in cup rugby. There have been some big shocks in the past and in every sport, there are always great cup run stories so there’s no reason why we can’t be one of those this season.
“I played with St Helens against Brisbane in the World Club Challenge in a game we were expected to lose heavily.
“No-one gave us a hope and we managed to steal a 20-18 win in what was a massive upset, so I’ll be using my experiences to help give the lads the belief they’ll need.”
Tickets for the Carnegie Challenge Cup fourth round contest between Rochdale Hornets and Castleford Tigers at the Spotland Stadium are prices at £12 adult, £8 concessions and £5 children and can be purchased via 01706 648004. Castleford season ticket holders are eligible for free entry.
Tickets for the Carnegie Challenge Cup Final at Wembley on Saturday August 27 are available by calling 0844 856 1113 or visiting www.rugbyleaguetickets.co.uk
For more information about the Carnegie Challenge Cup visit www.carnegiechallengecup.co.uk