Make or break month ahead for Castleford Tigers declares fit-again forward Junior Moors

Junior Moors. PIC: Jonathan Gawthorpe/JPIMedia
Junior Moors. PIC: Jonathan Gawthorpe/JPIMedia

FIT-AGAIN FORWARD Junior Moors reckons the next month could make or break Castleford Tigers’ season.

Last week’s 31-18 home defeat by Hull was Moors’ first appearance since Easter Monday at Catalans Dragons and he has retained his place in the initial squad for tomorrow’s trip to Salford Red Devils.

Daryl Powell

Daryl Powell

Salford are sixth in the Betfred Super League table, one place and two points below Tigers, so it is another huge game in the race for play-offs qualification and Moors stressed: “These next couple of weeks are really important for us.”

He said: “There’s a bit of a logjam in the middle of the ladder at the moment so every game is important.

“Salford have shown they can put in a really good performance, so we will be ready for their best performance.

“Despite some of the things we’ve come across we are in a decent position.

Chris Clarkson

Chris Clarkson

“We are in a spot where we can really make our season in the next four weeks.”

Moors added: “We really want to put our foot down against Salford and try and get the two points and then roll on from there.

“If you get in the top-five, that’s what’s important.

“Anything can happen from there.”

Cory Aston. PIC: Jonathan Gawthorpe/JPIMedia

Cory Aston. PIC: Jonathan Gawthorpe/JPIMedia

Despite the result, Moors insisted there were positive signs last week.

“I think, for the majority of the game, we played well; we were pretty happy with how we were going,” he recalled.

“There was just some execution and stuff like that, our last tackle plays and some individual things we need to fix up, but we are not far off getting a good performance.”

Moors’ return is a boost for Tigers who are beginning to get players back after their injury crisis in the early part of the season.

He confirmed: “I got through okay.

“Obviously I have been out for a while so I had to get the game lungs back, but it was good to be out on the field.”

The injury took longer to clear up than was expected. Moors revealed: “I had something playing up in my knee, there was a bit of bone growth in there.

“It was something the physios hadn’t seen before so it was a bit of trial and error with the things we were trying to do to counter it.

“It was a long time, but I felt good out there and it was just unfortunate we couldn’t get the win.”

Moors went over for Tigers’ second try soon after coming off the bench. He admitted: “It is always nice to get over the line, but I’d always trade it in for two points.”

Coach Daryl Powell has named an unchanged squad for the first time this season and will select from the 17 on duty against Hull, plus Cory Aston and Chris Clarkson. Ryan Lannon could feature for Salford after returning to them on loan from Hull KR.

Junior Sa’u, Adam Walker and Greg Johnson are also in contention, but Ben Nakubuwai and George Griffin drop out from the side which beat Wakefield Trinity four days ago.

Salford Red Devils: from Evalds, Welham, Sa’u, Bibby, Lui, Mossop, Dudson, Jones, Flanagan, Lussick, Walker, Burke, McCarthy, Tomkins, Johnson, Olpherts, Inu, Lannon, Hastings.

Castleford Tigers: from Aston, Blair, Clare, Clarkson, Cook, Eden, Massey, Mata’utia, McMeeken, McShane, Millington, Milner, Minikin, Moors, Rankin, Sene-Lefao, Smith, Trueman, Watts.

Referee: Scott Mikalauskas (Leigh).

Kick-off: Tonight, 7.45pm