Date: Sunday 31st May
Venue: St James’ Park
Castleford Tigers 19 man squad:
Ryan Boyle, Michael Channing, Liam Finn, Luke Gale, Ashley Gibson, Oliver Holmes, Andy Lynch, Will Maher, Nathan Massey, Mike McMeeken, Grant Millington, Adam Milner, Scott Moore, Junior Moors, Ben Roberts, Michael Shenton, Denny Solomona, Jordan Tansey, Jake Webster
Wakefield Wildcats 19 man squad:
Scott Anderson, Chris Annakin, Joe Arundel, Dean Collis, Pita Godinet, Tom Johnstone, Danny Kirmond, Reece Lyne, Paul McShane, Jacob Miller, Jon Molloy, Richard Owen, Chris Riley, Matt Ryan, Nick Scruton, Mickael Simon, Dan Smith, Tim Smith, Danny Washbrook
Last 10 Meetings
Castleford 22, Wakefield 24 (SLR1, 8/2/15)
Castleford 26, Wakefield 22 (SLR26, 7/9/14)
Castleford 50, Wakefield 12 (SLR13, 18/5/14) (at Etihad Stadium, Manchester)
Wakefield 20, Castleford 43 (SLR9, 18/4/14)
Wakefield 36, Castleford 32 (SLR27, 8/9/13)
Castleford 49, Wakefield 24 (SLR16, 25/5/13) (at Etihad Stadium, Manchester)
Castleford 16, Wakefield 37 (SLR9, 29/3/13) (Match abandoned after 73 minutes – damaged floodlights)
Castleford 12, Wakefield 40 (SLR23, 5/8/12)
Castleford 26, Wakefield 32 (SLR15, 26/5/12) (at Etihad Stadium, Manchester)
Wakefield 16, Castleford 34 (SLR10, 6/4/12)
Magic Weekend comes to an end on Sunday evening with Castleford Tigers and Wakefield Wildcats bringing the curtain down on the event’s first ever appearance at St James’ Park, the home of Newcastle United.
It will be he sixth Magic meeting of the two sides with Castleford winning three of the previous five games between the two, including a 50-12 victory at the Etihad last year.
Wakefield’s only two victories in their eight appearances have come against Castleford, the last of which came in 2012 as they were 32-26 winners in the first ever Magic fixture played at the home of Manchester City.
That was also the first time the event was held in England and the Wildcats will be hoping to mark their first ever appearance at St James’ Park with a victory as they did at the Etihad.
If they are to do so they will have to break a 12 game losing streak though as the last time the Super League’s bottom side won was back in February when they defeated Hull KR.
They did come out on top in this fixture back in round one though, as they shocked the Tigers with a 24-22 win in their opening game of the season.
In the 40 Super League meetings between these two teams there is nothing in it, with 20 wins apiece in this fierce rivalry.
Castleford are out of form themselves, with loses in their last two league fixtures as well as being dumped out of the Challenge Cup by Hull FC at the first hurdle, a competition they were runners up in last year. Their last league victory came over Catalans as they were 36-28 winners over the travelling French side in round 13.
The Wildcats are still without a permanent coach after the recent departure of James Webster, which came in the aftermath of their Challenge Cup loss to Leigh Centurions, with Stuart Dickens continuing as Interim Coach. He has his work cut out as they look destined to join the top four from the Championship at the end of the season to fight it out for a place in the top division next year.
Daryl Powell’s Tigers will be looking to avoid defeat and climb back into the top 8 so that they avoid joining their local rivals in the middle 8’s next season.
Wakefield need a win to lift spirits and keep their season alive, and Cas need a win to put themselves in a strong position within the top 8 so this could be an intriguing final game of the weekend.
Prediction: It has been a horrible year so far for Wakefield and I can’t see it getting better anytime soon. The occasion and the fact that it is a local derby could see them up their game however Castleford should have enough to get the win. Tigers by 14
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