Castleford Tigers boss Daryl Powell has backed his players to keep the feel-good factor going tomorrow night as they look to make it four wins out of four despite missing nine first team players.
England international Adam Milner became the latest injury victim when he suffered an ankle knock in last Saturday’s match at London and has been ruled out of the home game against Hull KR.
The injury is not as bad as feared and he may be back within a week, but the Tigers will be without him against Rovers, along with Alex Foster (groin) and Ben Roberts (hamstring) and the more long term sidelined Oliver Holmes, Mike McMeeken, Luke Gale, Jamie Ellis, Mitch Clark and Will Maher.
However, Cas shrugged off their injury woes to beat London and head coach Powell is delighted with the way the players have brushed aside any adversity so far this season.
He told the Express: “We’ve obviously got a fair few injuries at the moment so everybody coming into the team needs to do a good job and they are doing.
“I think we got questioned a lot before we got into this season about recruitment, but we have shown we’ve got what we need.
“We’ve got nine players missing this week and to still be doing what we’re doing is a phenomenal effort from the boys.
“There’s so many players who are in good form, playing really well. It’s good to see and quite tough to do right at the start of the season.”
Powell is pleased that Cas go into the game on top of the table after three matches, but warned that they would have to play well again if they were to continue the run this week.
He said: “Somebody said it doesn’t mean anything being top at this stage, but you are better being there than anywhere else, I can’t see any better place to be.
“Clearly nothing’s won at this time of year, it’s very early, but we’ve been really proud over the last few years being a consistent rugby league team that goes out and performs well most weeks.
“I think that we’re showing that we are going to be that again hopefully.
“You have your blips here and there and you have to handle things that go against you, but ultimately we are doing a lot of things right.
“We know we’ll have some sterner challenges coming up.
“This week Hull KR will throw a lot at us from an attacking perspective. Tim Sheens is a really focused, attacking coach who’s coached at the very highest level.
“I’ve got a lot of respect for what they do and they will be a big challenge to us. They’re a tricky team.”
Powell added: “Tim’s always been a set piece specialist, he likes to throw different things at teams.
“There’s a lot of intricate plays they throw on you that can cause you trouble, so we’ve got to be mindful of that and we’ve had a look at that.
“We’ve got to focus on ourselves and work on where we think maybe there may be some weaknesses within their armoury. Just get after it and go and play well.”