CHILLED-OUT CASTLEFORD Tigers are geared up to complete a derby cleansweep tonight.
Victory at home to Wakefield Trinity Wildcats would mean Tigers have taken maximum points from all five meetings with their two nearest rivals this year.
Tigers beat Wakefield and Leeds Rhinos at home and away in First Utility Super League and boss Daryl Powell admitted gaining “bragging rights” for the supporters is a huge incentive going into this evening’s Super-8s showdown.
“Leeds and Wakefield are games you want to win and the fans see these as absolutely massive,” Powell said. “I speak to people all the time and they work with supporters of the other sides.
“That’s where it all comes from – they go in there on a Monday and want to have the bragging rights. So we want to make sure we give the Cas fans the advantage of rolling into work feeling good about what they are going to say to their colleagues who support Wakefield.”
Trinity are on a five-match losing run, which began when Tigers won 46-20 at Belle Vue in July, but Powell has warned his players against complacency. He stressed: “That’s what we’re trying to avoid.
“Everything we’re talking about is consistency and turning us into a top-four team that can win things.
“The mentality, the way we start this game and the way we go after it needs to be right up there. Everyone is mindful of that.”
Powell added: “For us it’s an important game to maintain some consistency in what we’ve been doing in the Super-8s.
“We’ve played the top three now and I think we’ve been outstanding.
“For us it’s important we maintain that mentality going into this game.
“Sometimes you play a team where the perception of the challenge is not as great and you can cause yourself some trouble.
“We started poorly last time we played Wakefield and we are mindful we need to start better this time.”
Neither team had a game last weekend, due to the Challenge Cup break and Powell said his side are feeling fresh and ready for action.
“We were pretty relaxed last week,” he revealed.
“We did three sessions and one of them was tough, but we’re pretty chilled out and mentally we should be refreshed.
“The players have looked pretty sharp in training. It is a couple of weeks since we last played and the boys should be ready to go.”
Jake Webster is set to return from injury tonight and Paddy Flynn and Will Maher are in contention for a recall to the 17, but Tigers will be without Frankie Mariano, who suffered a season-ending rib injury against Warrington two weeks ago.
The club have confirmed Mariano will not be offered a new deal when his contract expires in the autumn.
Castleford Tigers: from Chase, Cook, Crooks, Dorn, Flynn, Gale, Hampshire, O Holmes, Maher, McShane, Millington, Milner, Minikin, Moors, Patrick, Sevelio, Solomona, Springer, Webster.
Wakefield Trinity Wildcats: from Anderson, Arona, Arundel, Ashurst, Crowther, Finn, Hall, Harrison, Johnstone, Jowitt, Lyne, Miller, Molloy, Moore, Scruton, Simon, A Tupou, B Tupou, Yates.
Referee: Gareth Hewer (Whitehaven).
Kick-off: Tonight, 8pm.