“I have never seen anything like this” – Daryl Powell on his toughest season at Castleford

Castleford head coach Daryl Powell is remaining positive about his team going forward despite their difficult 2020 campaign.

The Tigers have won only five games this season and find themselves in ninth, their lowest position for seven years.

It is unchartered territory for Powell since he took charge at the Jungle, having transformed Castleford from relegation candidates to title contenders.

But after an uncharacteristic season from his team, Powell was in reflective mood ahead of their game against Hull KR on Thursday evening.

“This is completely alien to us – where we sit at the moment since I came here in 2013,” he said.

“We have not been any lower than fifth. There will be plenty of bullets flying out there but I am not on any social media so I do not worry about any of that.

“I just crack on with my job. I have not even looked at the top four. I reckon it is gone now.

“We are just trying to get as much as we can out of this season and evolve a little bit.”

Elaborating on the turbulent season for himself and the club, Powell is determined to ride out the tough times and learn from the experience.

He added: “I have never seen anything like this in my coaching career so far.

“Obviously, there is the Covid situation, which has been really hard work for all sorts of reasons.

“But that is a societal problem. To try and run a sport in this has been really hard work.

“The injuries that we have had as well as the Covid situations and they have all tended to be in one position at a time which has been hard work.

“At the end of the day, you are always learning things. For me as a coach, I have never been in this position and it is tough.

“I have been learning how to handle this situation and I think it is the same for our players as well.

“We keep on learning and growing and we will end up in a better position moving forward, even though it feels pretty tough at the moment.”

Castleford face one of only two teams below them in the Super League table tomorrow when they take on Hull KR at the Totally Wicked Stadium.

As the challenges continue to come at Powell, the Tigers boss says he will mix up his squad for this game and Monday’s clash with Leeds.

“We are trying to rotate the squad,” he said. “We are a little bit down on troops and that is difficult.

“The team will look a little bit different tomorrow and it will probably look a little bit different on Monday.

“I have picked three teams this morning and that is just the way it is.

“We will just try to do our best to rotate people and give opportunities to some of the younger guys, and keep trying to grow out of this tough situation.”