Castleford head coach Daryl Powell wasn’t that impressed with his side’s first-half showing in their 28-18 victory over Salford, but was very happy to see youngsters Brad Martin and Lewis Peachey show their stuff.
“I thought we were a little bit one out in the first-half, but I thought we improved that in the second-half and we created a lot of opportunities from the field position we fought for,” Powell said.
“Our regard for the ball was really good in the second-half too, though there were a couple of little bits at the end that put us under pressure.
“Brad Martin in particular was excellent and Lewis Peachey played really well; they’ve been working their way through the team and they played fantastic tonight.
“Brad has a bit of go about him and they’re both really young forwards and they’ve got really bright futures.
“They both usually find their front in the tackle and they’ve got good leg speed. Liam Watts played himself back into form tonight too.”
Halfback star Danny Richardson has had a difficult start to 2021 with injuries, but Powell was full of admiration for the ex-St Helens man.
“It was good to see him play with confidence with a hand in tries and his goal kicking was really good tonight – you need most of your players playing well in games and we’re getting there.
“He’s had a couple of injuries which have been hard for him and he’s had a couple of poor games that he wouldn’t have been happy with.
“He’s still a young halfback and he’s working on some areas of his game; he had a jab to play today and he will have to do that for a few weeks, but he’s a quality player.
“The pressure is there because Gaz O’Brien is in the back waiting – we again had 19 fit players tonight and a few of them are obviously young players so our squad depth is being tested and the boys have shown they can do it tough.”
Nathan Massey went off with a head knock and Greg Eden with a hamstring problem, but the Castleford head coach didn’t think they would be too great of a concern.
“Greg has a tight hamstring, so we will get checked that through the week – it’s not a tear and Nathan failed his head test.
“It gives opportunities to young players and potentially we will have four or five men back next week – if we’d lost four out of five games then you’d be worried about it, but we’ve won four out of five.
“We’ve got George Griffin, Dan Smith, Jacques O’Neill and Sui Matagi to come back in, so we’re going to be dangerous this year.
Even with four wins from five Super League games, Powell still doesn’t think his side are firing on all cylinders.
“I don’t think we’re playing that well to be honest; there were really good signs from a defensive perspective tonight and that was a great part of our game, but we can improve.”