Warrington Wolves travel to the Mend-a-hose Jungle to take on the Castleford Tigers as both sides fight for third place. Here’s everything you need to know…
Daryl Powell has made three changes to his squad following last week’s narrow defeat to Wigan Warriors as injured trio Quentin Laulu-Togaga’e, Jesse Sene-Lefao, and Adam Milner miss out.
Grant Millington and Calum Turner come into the squad alongside Peter Mata’utia who is in line for his first appearance in front of the Tigers fans following his move from Leigh.
Castleford 19-man squad: Clare, Clark, Eden, Ellis, Gill, Holmes, Maher, Massey, Mata’utia, McMeeken, McShane, Millington, Moors, Shenton, Trueman, Turner, Wardle, Watts, Webster.
Warrington head coach Steve Price has also made three changes to his side following last week’s demolition of Catalans Dragons.
Stefan Ratchford, Ben Murdoch-Masila and Mike Cooper all return in place of Josh Charnley, Harvey Livett and Ben Westwood as the Wolves keep one eye on next weekend’s Challenge Cup Final.
Warrington 19-man squad: Akauola, K. Brown, M. Brown, Clark, Cooper, Goodwin, Hill, Hughes, G. King, T. King, Lineham, Murdoch-Masila, Patton, Philbin, Pomeroy, Ratchford, Roberts, Smith, Thompson.
In recent meetings, there is very little to choose between the two sides with three wins each in the last six meetings and Castleford edging the scoring by just two tries.
In their previous meetings this season home advantage has been non-existent. Warrington ran out 18-6 winners at the Mend-a-hose Jungle, while Castleford secured a narrow 34-30 victory at the Halliwell Jones.
On recent form, the comparisons continue. Both sides have three wins in their last six games, although Warrington do also have a draw to their name against Catalans Dragons.
KEY BATTLE – Paul McShane vs Daryl Clark
Touted as two of the best hookers in Super League, both players combine tireless hard work with talent to drive their team forward from the spine of the side.
McShane has earned the compliments of many a pundit and several calls for him to be involved in the England set-up, and looking at his stats it’s hard to disagree. With eight tries and seventeen assists, McShane has been a creative hub for the Tigers, all while leading the competition in tackles (921)
Standing opposite McShane is the former Man of Steel Daryl Clark, and whilst he hasn’t quite hit the heights of that 2014 season Clark has chipped in with five tries and six assists, whilst registering 882 tackles in his defensive work.
Future England squads could be affected by the outcome of this battle and both players will be looking to outdo the other and set his team on the way to the two vital competition points.
THE IMPORTANT DETAILS
Date: Friday 17th August
Venue: Mend-a-Hose Jungle
Referee: Gareth Hewer