With Rivals Round just days away, Mason Lino spoke to Serious About Rugby League about Wakefield’s match with West Yorkshire rivals Castleford on Thursday night.
Trinity go into the game in good form having won four of their last five losing only to Wigan in the Challenge Cup quarter-finals in which Trinity made a good account of themselves in the first half.
Now with a derby on their hands as they look to get straight back on the horse, Wakefield halfback Mason Lino spoke about how big a game it is for Trinity: “100% it a big game for us, we haven’t beaten these guys for a while now so it’s one of those games you mark down on your calendar. I’m very excited and hopefully we can get one over on them.”
Of course, Trinity haven’t been able to beat the Tigers in years, but Lino stated that the club’s recent record against their nearest and dearest doesn’t bother him: “We try not to worry about it too much you know, it’s a record really. It’s one of those games where whatever form the team’s in at the time you just throw out of the window and whoever comes with the right attitude comes away with the points.”
In order to beat Castleford, Wakefield will be relying on Lino to have a big game and continue his recent good form. The scrumhalf has gotten over his tough start to life in Super League and has been central to Trinity’s recent good run even kicking two 40/20s against Wigan last week.
On his recent form, Wakefield’s number seven said he was now more acclimatised to Super League: “I think I’ve just adjusted to the style of play over here, finding my feet a bit quicker now and just enjoying it really. Our middles are playing really well and just on the back of that it’s pretty good.”
On Thursday he’ll likely be joined by Lee Gaskell with Jacob Miller unavailable but when Miller returns there will be some serious competition for places in the halves and Lino said that it’s a massive motivator: “It’s massive when you’ve got people fighting for spots it brings the best out of players, it makes us work harder for our positions which is good. Gask had a really good game at the weekend. He’s got a really good short kicking game for a tall fella. He’s a class player and we’ll definitely be fighting for our spots.”
A big squad always helps during this Easter period with two games back-to-back and Lino noted just how tough this period is: “It’s pretty tough to be honest but we’re fortunate we’ve got pretty good strength and conditioning staff at Wakefield. They’re going to be working with us pretty much 24/7 for the next 10 days but everyone’s in the same boat so it’s just how we manage it all.”
Two wins over this period would be massive for Trinity as they look to maintain their momentum. On the back of their good start, Lino believes Trinity have a chance of making the play-offs in 2022: “100% we’re optimistic about it. We can’t look too far ahead; we do want to be playing finals footy but we’ve got to take it game by game. We’re in a good position compared to last year.”