Castleford Tigers will not be lacking motivation according to head coach Daryl Powell when they play their first ever Super Eights game against Hull FC tomorrow night.
The Tigers will step out onto the Mend-A-Hose Jungle pitch with revenge in mind after they lost at Hull in Super League and were also knocked out of the Challenge Cup by them at the KC Stadium.
Cas did beat Lee Radford’s men at home back in March, but they are desperate to make amends for the defeats to Hull since and determined to bounce back from a disappointing display against Warrington Wolves last time out.
Tigers boss Powell told the Express: “Everybody has trained well after coming back in from a week off,
“We had a team meeting on Sunday, we trained Monday and were back in yesterday. The boys have looked good, which they should do obviously after a week off and some time away from the club.
“The motivation’s there for us now to start what is effectively a new competition.
“The players have turned up with a disappointing performance last time out so we certainly want to put that right. And there’s the added motivation of playing against Hull, who’ve beaten us the last twice we’ve played them.
“Obviously they were both away from home, but they knocked us out of the Challenge Cup and beat us in the league so we’ve got a fair bit of motivation going in against them I would think.
“We know plenty about them, but we’ve just got to perform. I don’t think in any of the three games against them we’ve played to our potential so it’s about us getting right back to our standards and playing well against Hull.
“We know how good we are when we play well. We need some consistency over 80 minutes back in our performances.
“We are looking to use this as a fresh start for us, we’re looking forward to the next seven games.”
Powell is expecting a big test for his players from a side he rates highly despite their seventh place finish in the first phase of Super League.
He said: “They’re just a strong team with a fair bit of threat across the field so we are conscious that man for man we need to play well and we need to be big improvers from the last time we played.
“Marc Sneyd’s been playing well for them. They’ve got Jordan Abdull who’s been playing at half-back now that Leon Pryce is out for the season, and Mark Minichiello is a strong player. Jordan Rankin at the back caused a lot of trouble the last time we played them.
“They’ve obviously got players like Joe Westerman in the pack and Danny Houghton at hooker, who are quality players.
“They’ve got good players in every position – Tom Lineham is a great finisher, Fetuli Talanoa is a really strong player in the centre.
“But there should be a great deal of motivation for us to get this job done. It’s a really important game for us and it’s absolutely crucial that we win our home games in the Super Eights. This is the first of those so it’s big game for us.”