Powell to ring changes as Wakefield game beckons – but one star will be out for the “foreseeable”

Castleford head coach Daryl Powell could not have been happier with the performance that Jason Qareqare made on debut last week, but knows that Wakefield will pose a tough challenge on Wednesday evening.

And, the Tigers boss has said there will be a few changes to the squad that lost against Hull FC last weekend.

“There’ll be a few changes in there, we’ve got a couple of players coming back and we’re getting closer to our best team, but it’s been tough,” Powell said.

“There were a few players after the semi-final that we needed to be mindful of being pushed a little bit.

“It was little bit awkward but we’re at an an important stage of the season and we need to start performing.

“Wakefield are playing really well with the ball and they will certainly challenge us.”

After his try-scoring heroics last week, Jason Qareqare is set to retain his place and Powell couldn’t speak highly enough of the teenager.

“There’s a chance he will be in the 17 as I thought he was awesome last week and his try was outstanding.

“It was more how he handled Andre Savelio who’s a pretty strong human being – that was more impressive than his try and his whole attitude and maturity was great.

“I saw him with his school tracksuit on straight after training – he’s doing his A levels, so he’s a smart kid.

“He’s been awesome, just the way he’s handled everything has been class – you saw my reaction after he scored, it was such a dream for him.

“We marked him down early that he would be a player with class and maturity so he will certainly be one to watch.”

Jesse Sene-Lefao is likely to play his 100th game for Castleford tomorrow night.

“He’s great is Jesse, he’s just got unbounded enthusiasm and I think he’s playing really well at the moment and as well as I’ve seen him play over here.

“I’m really pleased with the way he’s responded in the past three or four weeks – he’s annoying at times but good to have around the place overall!”

Powell and Castleford have won 14 of the last derby clashes between the two sides, but the boss knows that the Tigers are in for a great challenge.

“We’ve been fortunate in a couple of them; we’ve scraped past them a few times particularly at Wakefield where it’s tough to play.

“We’d like to keep that record, but Wakefield are playing as well with the ball as I’ve seen them and we’re not defending great!

“Joe Westerman is playing the best rugby he’s ever played and Mason Lino has gone in there and added to it whilst Tom Johnstone and Matty Ashurst are back so they’re close to their best team.

“It’ll be really challenging for us and we need to defend outstandingly well, we’ve had a good look at them and we know what they do. They play similar to us.

“Derbies are great, they bring out a little bit extra and they mean a lot if you are a local as I am – we’re in the same district so it’s going to be a great game and for the fans it’s always massive.”

One Castleford player who won’t be taking to the field on Wednesday night is Greg Eden who is still a long way away from fitness.

“He’s not fit at the moment and how long he’s going to be out for we don’t really know, but he won’t be fit for the foreseeable.”

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