Jamie Ellis: Castleford Tigers can sneak into Grand Final

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The shock result at Wembley has convinced half-back Jamie Ellis that Castleford Tigers can win  this year’s Grand Final.

With three rounds of the regular season remaining, Tigers are battling to secure a place in the Betfred Super League play-offs.

They travel to St Helens tonight just six days after the league leaders were stunned 18-4 by Warrington Wolves in the Coral Challenge Cup final.

Tigers have not won away against St Helens during the summer era, but Ellis insisted: “It just showed last weekend, anything can happen.”

He stressed: “Warrington weren’t given a chance of winning it.

“It is going to be a tough game for us this week, St Helens are the league leaders and they are going to be fighting and wanting a bit of a reaction, but we are looking forward to it.

“That is going to be better for us down the line, playing their best team and really going for it.

“Going into the play-offs that is going to be beneficial for us.”

Tigers’ final two games are home to third-placed Hull and away against Wigan Warriors, who are fourth. That means, if they quality, they will be battle-hardened for the play-offs.

“It is like play-off rugby for us now,” Ellis said.

“These are the games you want to be playing in.

“In our last two games we haven’t conceded a try so defence is the main thing we are doing well.

“We could maybe have put a few more points on Huddersfield [who Tigers beat 24-0] and been a bit more clinical, but we have been working on that this week in training.

“You have to be clinical, especially against St Helens and take your chances. It is going to be tough, but anything can happen and you never know, we could sneak into a Grand Final.

“With Warrington winning, anything can happen on the day. We just have to turn up and play well.

“Saints have been the benchmark this year. The whole squad has done really well for them, but from second to sixth there’s nothing in it, you never know what can happen - we could get into that final and win it.”

Tonight will be the third game of Ellis’ comeback from a pre-season knee injury.

He said: “Obviously it has been a bit tough, getting injured in pre-season and not playing until now.

“I’ve felt a bit rusty and off the pace, but I have got two games under my belt now and hopefully I can kick on and have a good end to the season.”

Not having a game last weekend wasn’t ideal for Ellis who admitted: “I wanted to keep going and get some consistency.

“But I think it is going to be beneficial for our lads who’ve been playing ever week. Some of them have had a rest which is going to be good for them.

“I’ve got another year left here. I just want to finish the season well.

“It has been a frustrating year for me, obviously, but that’s rugby league.

“You get these injuries, but I am back playing now.

“I want to finish strong and hopefully get to a Grand Final.”