Sean Long says if Featherstone repeat this element of Castleford win they will win the league in 2023

In Sean Long’s first game as Featherstone Rovers boss they enjoyed a derby day win over Castleford Tigers to bring to an end a year that promised so much but did not see them head to the promised land.

2022 seemed like the year they might finally earn promotion to Super League but those dreams are now postponed to 2023 as Long looks to guide them to the top tier.

The Rovers showed promise in their 26-10 win over the young Tigers this afternoon and there was one element of the performance that Long believes if replicated all season the Rovers will earn promotion.

He said on the Rovers’ Twitter page: “I just liked how they scrambled for one another. Thomas Lacans chased someone down, they put a kick in and Bussey got back over there.

“Our defence we have worked a lot on that and to only concede two tries is good. If we can do that throughout the season, you will win the league that is a given.”

Defence the key to the title then for Long.

He also revealed that he was especially impressed with his forwards today: “I think everyone impressed, the middles were outstanding and grafted hard. That’s what we will be about this year, the graft.”