Tigers Fall To Wolves
Posted: Thursday 7th March 2019 - 10:11 PM
Castleford Tigers suffered their first defeat of the 2019 Betfred Super League campaign on Thursday night, losing 24-10 to an impressive Warrington Wolves outfit.
Greg Eden and Greg Minikin came up with scores for a Tigers side low on troops, but their efforts weren’t enough to stop last season’s Super League grand finalists.
With two of the top sides in the competition going head-to-head, a cagey start was almost guaranteed. In the opening exchanges, there was very little to split the sides as they traded possessions. However, a Tigers penalty after seven minutes opened the game up for the first real chance of the game.
Castleford booted the ball down field and set to work attacking the Wire line. Paul McShane came up with the decisive play, floating a kick to the left flank. Michael Shenton patted the ball down, and Eden came up with it, prior to waltzing in for the first points of the game.
The Tigers’ second chance came swiftly after, but the opportunity to go ten points up went begging as McShane uncharacteristically lost the ball after a smart run-around play with Liam Watts.
The black and amber were undoubtedly on top though, with Warrington barely threatening the Tigers’ 20-metre during the first quarter of the contest.
With a side of the Wolves’ quality however, it was never going to be too long before Steve Price’s team got themselves on the board. It was simple enough for Warrington when they got down the right end of the field. After Minikin shot the line hunting for a break-up tackle, James Clare was left in no-man’s-land to deal with a floated ball over to Jake Mamo. The former Huddersfield man finished well in the corner.
A few moments later, it was a similar story as Warrington hit the lead. This one was all about the put-down, with Mamo doing brilliantly to bring up his brace.
Castleford clawed back some territory after these two quick-fire scores, but the Wolves pack was making a real impact up the middle with every set they had.
Three minutes before the break, Warrington added to their lead, once again attacking the Tigers’ right side. This time, Jack Hughes came up with the points after averted the attention of the Castleford defence.
Half time followed, and it came at just the right time for the weary-looking Tigers. A breather and a re-group was required before a massive second period of 40 minutes.
When the sides re-emerged, Warrington remained in control, booting a penalty in the early going to extend the deficit to three scores.
The Tigers attempted to get things rolling, but Castleford’s depleted pack was struggling against the power of Warrington up the middle, and it wasn’t long before Wire struck again.
The towering Ben Murdoch-Masila came up with it, surging over the line with a strong run from 20 yards out.
There was a feeling around the ground that the floodgates could open at that point. However, the Tigers showed they had some steel about them in the aftermath of Murdoch-Masila’s try.
Enjoying a rare spell of pressure, Castleford worked the ball to the right flank and Minikin finished off the move superbly.
There was some energy about the Tigers now, but with the result just about in the bag for the hosts, it was mainly pride Castleford were playing for as we entered the final quarter of the game.
The visitors’ defence held up well, but Wire were allowing the Tigers little in attack as the clock ticked down.
The Wolves eased to the victory, leaving Daryl Powell and the Tigers plenty to dwell on ahead of next week’s clash with Salford Red Devils.
Full Time: Castleford Tigers 10-24 Warrington Wolves
Mata’utia, Clare, Minikin, Shenton, Eden, Trueman, Rankin, Watts, McShane, Moors, Sene-Lefao, Clarkson, Massey
Foster, Cook, Egodo, O’Neill
Tries: Eden, Minikin
Conversions: Rankin (1/2)
Ratchford, Mamo, Goodwin, King, Charnley, Austin, Patton, Hill, D. Clark, Cooper, Currie, Hughes, Tasi
Murdoch-Masila, J. Clark, Philbin, Westwood
Tries: Mamo (2), Hughes, Murdoch-Masila
Conversions: Ratchford (3/4)
Penalty: Ratchford (1/1)
*Match report by Ross Williams
**Photography by Melanie Allatt