Posted: Tuesday 13th June 2023

Tigers player and injury update

The Tigers wanted to share an update regarding player injuries and potential incomings.

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Castleford Tigers wanted to provide a squad injury update to our fans following a few recent injuries and to also give an insight into how some of our longer-term injured players are coming along in their journey back to match fitness, as well as an update on potential new signings for the remainder of the season.

To get up to speed on how the Fords pack is faring, who better to talk to than Tigers Head Physiotherapist, Matty Crowther.

Injuries from the recent fixture vs Salford

Firstly, Matty was asked about the prognosis on Cas captain Paul McShane’s injury, which the hooker picked up during last Friday’s home fixture against Salford and Crowther confirmed that McShane has suffered a fracture to his arm.

“Macca has a fractured forearm so he will need an operation and will see a specialist tomorrow morning. From that, they will make a prognosis but to make an estimate on how long he will be out for, it will probably be around eight weeks and we will be working closely with him to aid his recovery.”

Tigers centre Mahe Fonua was another casualty from the Salford game after he was forced off the field due to a concussion and was not able to return to the contest after failing his head injury assessment on the day.

“Mahe has got to go and see a specialist with his concussion from the other day because he’s had a couple in the last year. How long he will be out will be dependent on what the specialist’s prognosis is.”

Forward George Lawler was included in the 21-man squad ahead of the Red Devils game but was absent from Castleford’s matchday line-up on the night.

Matty disclosed that the 27-year-old will, unfortunately, miss around a month of action through suffering a quad strain.   

“George picked up a quad injury during captain’s run before the game on Friday and we will be working hard to get him the support he needs to get back as soon as possible.

Another member of the squad who suffered a setback in the build-up to last week’s game was youngster Sam Hall who took a blow to his knee in the days leading up to the game. The Tigers are continuing to assess the injury day by day.

Tigers on their way back

The Tigers were thrilled to welcome Danny Richardson back to light training in recent weeks as he continues his journey back to full fitness after injuring his medial collateral ligament (MCL) and anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) last year.

“Danny is doing really well through his rehab. The surgeon said that it was a really serious injury because it was his MCL and ACL, so he had to wait for his MCL to heal before they operated on his ACL.


“The surgeon requested for him to have the year so I would say he will be fit around November time and that’s nine months to a year from his operation which is a blow for him but he’s flying through his rehab and we are keen to welcome him back to the squad as soon as he is fit enough”.

Young prop Kieran Hudson is also on the road to recovery from an achilles injury suffered in pre-season.

“It was a nasty one for Kieran, I really feel for him because he had a really good off-season to get to the fitness level that we wanted him to get to. The injury came off the back of the high-intensity work he was doing and an achilles is normally around a nine-month turnaround post-surgery so he’ll be looking at the back end of the season.”

However, Crowther disappointingly confirmed that Callum McLelland has suffered a further setback in his recovery.

“Unfortunately, Cal has hit another stumbling block on his return. We are currently assessing him.”

Furthermore, Matty gave an update on how Jacques O’Neill is faring in his quest to return to the field since coming back to the club a couple of months ago.

“Jacques is a bit away from getting on the field at the moment. We are working closely with him to try and get him more mobile. Since leaving the Tigers in 2021 with an injury, his career took him to a completely different line of work and coming back into a tough environment is a hard ask. We've got to try and make him as durable as possible to get him back into a Super League playing environment again."

Matty added: “Long-term injuries are tough at the best of times, especially when you are young. Those lads have been supporting each other and they are all young enough to get over these injuries. The support network is there for everyone at the club.”

Both Elliot Wallis and Niall Evalds were recently subjected to knocks to their pectorals over the past few weeks and Crowther outlined that he is hopeful of a speedy recovery for young winger Wallis, although it looks to be a longer spell on the sidelines for the Fords’ #1.

“Elliot has got an injury to his pec, and he will see a specialist on Wednesday just to diagnose and see where he is at. It’s a funny sort of injury so we are hoping it will just be a rest period and some rehab before going back into it. Sometimes they can be complicated depending on where the tear is for the healing process, so we’ll see how he gets on at the specialist on Wednesday.”

“Niall is good. He’s just had his first week post-operation after rupturing his pectoral and there’s been no complication with the surgery. He’s looking at around being a good few months away so it will be touch and go whether he will be back for the final run-in of the season for us.”

The Tigers can also confirm that forward Suaia Matagi has flown home to New Zealand due to a recent family bereavement and everyone at the club would like to extend their condolences to Sui and his family at this difficult time. We are hoping to welcome Sui back soon.

Tigers back & available for selection to take on Wire at the Jungle 

It will be music to Cas fans’ ears that try-scoring winger Greg Eden will be in line to be back in contention to play in the Tigers’ next game at home to Warrington after recovering from a slight hamstring strain.

“Greg is getting up to full speed, he’s just ticking off a few return-to-play markers and then he will be in full training and available for selection. Nobody likes missing games and unfortunately, Greg has missed a few over the years so he can’t wait to get back.”

There is also more positive news with vice-captain Alex Mellor also coming back into the mix after having to sit out the Salford fixture through concussion protocol.

“Alex is going through his return to play and has passed all the different levels. All he’s got to do is to do a bit of contact work now so as long passes them he be ready to go for next week.”

Introducing new faces to the Tigers

On the introduction of some new faces to the squad, the club are working hard to strengthen and freshen up the squad for the 2023 season with some signings already confirmed and we are hoping to be able to share the news of some new incoming players for the remainder of the 2023 season in the coming days as negotiations are still in progress, so keep your eyes peeled!