Daryl Powell praises “electric” attack despite worrying injury to playmaker

Daryl Powell could not have been happier with how side steamrolled Leigh, with a 34-0 lead at half-time effectively ending the game as a contest.

“I thought we were great, there were loads of quality things; defensively we were really solid, obviously the game got a little bit scrappy from our perspective in the second-half.

“We went down to 12 men and conceded a few points, but with the ball we were electric at times, so. I was really pleased with that.

“Collectively there is a real steel about us, the first-half in particular I thought we were superb.”

With Castleford’s game against Hull KR lasting almost 100 minutes, there were concerns from fans that the Tigers would be fatigued, but Powell never saw such an issue.

“I was pretty confident we would be ok; there was a strong motivation after last week and the boys were a bit disappointed with what we did against Hull KR.

“The energy and communication were great so it was really pleasing.”

One thing which didn’t please the Castleford boss was the injury to halfback Gareth O’Brien who limped off early in the first-half.

“He got a knock above his knee, so he will be a strong doubt for next week.

“We’re not having much luck with halfbacks; we put a combination out there and hardly ever finish with it.

“It’s unlucky because he’s been great for us.”

Danny Richardson was already on the sidelines after succumbing to injury against Hull KR, so Powell was unwilling to risk the halfback.

“He’s got a shoulder and wrist injury; he came back from a wrist injury last week and he made that a little bit worse.

“He’s sore with that and he’s got an issue with his shoulder – it’s not massive in terms of time scale, but we will see through the week how he is.

Lewis Bienek made his debut for the home side and Powell was pleased with how the forward went.

“He was really strong; I thought he carried the ball well, he’s a big man and he’s going to put you under pressure when he gets the ball.

“I decided to leave him out there, and he got gassed towards the end of his stint but I thought he went well.”

Some of the tries Castleford scored demonstrated just why they are nicknamed “Classy Cas” and Powell enjoyed watching his side score a variety of efforts.

“There were some high-quality support play tries in there and some good tries from structure and then there were some instinctive efforts there too.

“It was really pleasing, the skill on show was excellent and it’s something that we spend a lot of time on and it’s pleasing that the players have bought into it.”

It was Castleford’s first game back at the Jungle in over a year and Powell revealed that that made a difference to the players and that he can’t wait for fans to return to make it even better.

“You want fans back in don’t you and that’s around the corner; it was great just being back here, the feel of the place is just awesome anyway.

“I will be delighted to get fans back in on the 17th and start enjoying the fans being behind us once again.”

Liam Watts crossed for a sensational score after bursting through and Grant Millington showed an extra turn of pace before feeding Niall Evalds for the latter’s try. But, Powell said that the speed shown by both props wasn’t surprising.

“They’re both quick, but they don’t get in the clear that often!

“Wattsy is a real good athlete, he can sprint and does a lot of things well when he’s on his game as he showed us tonight.

“Millo actually used to play on the wing, so they’ve got both got a turn of pace.”

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