Wakefield Wildcats boss Kear excited by Challenge Cup encounter with Castleford Tigers

John Kear
John Kear

WAKEFIELD Trinity Wildcats head coach admits that Saturday’s Challenge Cup fifth round tie at home to Castleford Tigers is about as exciting a game as it gets.

A place in the quarter-finals is at stake for the winner of the clash at the Rapid Solicitors Stadium and Kear can’t wait to get going. He said: “It is exciting. I love the Challenge Cup as a competition, I love local derbies and I have a special affinity with Castleford so you couldn’t have written a more exciting game for me.”

“There is a big prize at the end of it, getting into the last eight, and you can virtually smell Wembley at that stage of the competition.”

And the Wildcats players are equally excited according to Kear. “There is a real energy and buzz about them at training,” he said.

“We have got one or two bumps and bruises and a couple of players are not available but so have Castleford so you just get on with it.”

The Wildcats boss admits that the Tigers will be “desperate” to end their poor run of form in Super League. Kear said: “They will be focused, intense and wanting to rectify last week’s game against Warrington.

“Terry Matterson and the players know that they didn’t perform to their ability.”

He added: “If this game had been played prior to Easter I think Cas would have been red hot favourites and we would have been looking to make the numbers up.

“But we have played pretty well since Easter and their form has dipped since then. When you are in a performance slump you are always one game nearer to coming out of it so I just hope it isn’t the Challenge Cup on Saturday when they do come out of it.”

Winger Luke George has failed to recover from a hip injury and will miss the game, as will Chris Dean who faces two to three weeks out with a wrist injury.

Liam Higgins, Tyrone McCarthy and Gareth Moore are cup tied and will watch the game from the sidelines.

Read this week’s Wakefield Express for more news from the Wakefield Wildcats.