Daryl Powell hopes win over Huddersfield Giants will ease nerves of Castleford Tigers players

Daryl Powell
Daryl Powell

Daryl Powell is hoping the victory over Huddersfield Giants will help ease nerves he has detected among his players.

The Castleford Tigers head coach was relieved to see his side edge out the Giants in golden point extra-time and wants to see Cas kick on now.

Castleford Tigers players get to grips with a Huddersfield giants player. Picture: Simon Hall

Castleford Tigers players get to grips with a Huddersfield giants player. Picture: Simon Hall

He said: “It was an energy sapper. It was a tough game for us and a real nervy one.

“Obviously conditions were tough and Huddersfield have been playing exceptionally well. We showed a lot of character to win it.

“We did some pretty dumb stuff at times, but we needed to win really and for us it’s just building on that.

“It’s a big win for us and it feels pretty important.

“You need lifters in terms of your spirit and that was one of those. It’s been a tough period and we’re asking for everybody to get behind us and for the players to build confidence and keep getting behind each other.

“We are trying to find a bit of fluency in the way we play. We did some better things defensively and with the ball there are signs, but I just think we look nervous.

“We are trying to relieve the nervousness from the players, but it’s there for all to see. It’s hard to get away from – you aren’t winning games consistently and you haven’t got players who aren’t playing well every single week. We are trying to get towards that and tonight goes a big step in the right direction.”

On the frantic efforts in extra-time before the Tigers eventually clinched victory, Powell commented: “It was probably the most interesting period of extra-time I’ve ever seen.

“There were a couple of drop-goal efforts, some pea rollers and some flappers and a great strike by Peter Mata’utia.

“It was great for the fans. We haven’t had a game here for a while then it absolutely belts it down, which makes life difficult and it makes it difficult for us to get spectators in here.

“I thought our fans were great. It was a really edgy game, we asked them to really get behind us and they did tonight.”

Powell had words of praise for several of his players, particularly Grant Millington who played his 200th game for the club.

He added: "Grant Millington has been crucial to us.

"We haven't quite seen the best of him yet this year, but he's been a special player for the club.

"There's been some outstanding overseas players at Castleford and he ranks right up there at the top of the pile so you know he's done an awesome job for the club.

"Liam Watts has got a massive engine. You can leave him out there for 80 minutes if you want. I'd rather not too much, but we've been so depleted on troops and he's so important to us that we've had to do that.

"I like what Dan Smith's doing for his. He's doing a really good job and that combination (with Watts) that started the game was outstanding for us.

"Adam Milner did a good job off the bench as well, but you need a pivotal figure in your pack and Wattsy's been a stand-out all year.

"Paul McShane played well. He's not been in the best of form so it was good to see him play well."