Tigers Fall To The Wolves
Posted: Friday 3rd May 2019 - 9:46 PM
Castleford Tigers suffered a 26-14 defeat under the Friday night lights of the Mend-A-Hose Jungle, succumbing to the second-placed Warrington Wolves.
A late comeback of sorts, fuelled by tries from Tuoyo Egodo and Greg Minikin, gave the Tigers hope late on, but the damage Warrington did shortly after the break proved to be too much.
The early goings were steady for both sides, but Castleford certainly didn’t come out of the blocks looking like a side coming off a two-game slide. A Jake Trueman 40/20 after five minutes set the tone for the Tigers and a few moments later, the Castleford were on the board.
A wayward kick from Blake Austin was allowed to bounce by the hosts, before Mike McMeeken pounced on the loose ball and sped through a gaping hole in the Wolves’ defence. The in-form back-rower did exceptionally well, drawing Stefan Ratchford before sending a supporting Cory Aston under the posts. Peter Mata’utia added the extras.
The Wolves hit straight back though, levelling things up shortly after via a rampaging run from Mike Cooper.
Pre-game, this one had been tough to predict and the first half fit that script. Chances at the try line were few and far between, with the action in the middle of the park taking centre stage.
The Tigers were rocked as they lost Paul McShane to a knock early on, but Adam Milner came in and did a great job in his old hooker role.
There were fireworks aplenty too, with Warrington’s Austin playing the role of pantomime villain. The Tigers stuck to their task though, and they were granted a fair bit of respect from the Wolves when Stefan Ratchford opted for the two when they were given a penalty deep in Tigers’ territory.
With half an hour played, it looked as if the Tigers had hit the front, but Tuoyo Egodo couldn’t quite get the ball over the whitewash. Instead, after the video referee turned down Castleford’s effort, the Wolves extended their lead via Toby King – who was gifted the four points after Greg Eden failed to deal with an Austin kick to the corner.
No more tries came during the first half, but Warrington were allowed to push themselves two points further ahead, with a penalty as time expired.
Straight after the interval, it was the Wolves who grabbed the initiative, scoring almost instantly as Toby King grabbed his brace. Then, just a few minutes later, the primrose and blue struck again – this time through Ben Currie.
It looked like the floodgates had opened when Ryan Atkins chased down an attacking kick and seemingly touched down, but Robert Hicks in the video booth came to the Tigers’ rescue, judging that the veteran centre hadn’t grounded the ball properly.
It was a similar story a little later on, with Jack Hughes grounding the ball this time. Still though, no points added after a look upstairs.
Despite absorbing a mass of Warrington pressure, it was in fact the Tigers that scored next. Some smart hands up the right side set Egodo free and the winger made no mistake in the corner.
All of a sudden, there was a bit of a spring in the Castleford step, and the fans responded. The noise levels lifted, and now the Tigers were on the front foot.
Once again, with fifteen minutes on the clock, the hosts opted to go to the right flank, providing Greg Minikin with the opportunity of four points.
Out of nowhere, we had a twelve-point ballgame, and everything to play for.
The Tigers threw everything at the Wolves in the time left, but Warrington’s defence held firm to their credit. Mike McMeeken very nearly got over with a couple of minutes remaining, but time was always going to be against Castleford regardless.
The Wolves held on, taking home the two points.
Full Time: Castleford Tigers 14-26 Warrington Wolves
Mata’utia, Egodo, Minikin, Blair, Eden, Trueman, Aston, Watts, McShane, Maher, Clarkson, McMeeken, Massey
Milner, Clark, Turner, Smith
Tries: Aston, Egodo, Minikin
Conversion: Mata’utia (1/1), Turner (0/2)
Ratchford, Johnson, King, Atkins, Charnley, Austin, Patton, Hill, D. Clark, Cooper, Currie, Hughes, Davis
Philbin, Akauola, Clark, Livett
Tries: Cooper, King (2), Currie
Conversions: Ratchford (2/4)
Penalty: Ratchford (2/2)
Tip Tankers Services Man of the Match: Tuoyo Egodo
Golden Gamble: 06267
*Match report by Ross Williams
**Match photography by Melanie Allatt
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