Castleford Tigers climbed to the top of the Super League table with a convincing 32-16 win over Hull Kingston Rovers at the Mend A Hose Jungle.
A brace of tries from Greg Eden saw the Tigers come away with an important victory but it was Jordan Rankin who put in a man of the match performance.
Hull KR opened the scoring when Mose Masoe managed to squeeze through the Castleford defence despite the best efforts of multiple defenders.
However, Castleford soon hit back when Rankin collected his own kick into the in-goal area to touch down and make it 4-6.
Having impressed so far this season, Liam Watts grabbed the Tigers second try of the game when he powered his way over from short range, with no efforts to stop him.
Daryl Powell’s side showed why they are one of the best attacking teams in the league when they worked the ball to Greg Eden, who was waiting on the left hand side, touching down in his signature fashion to give the Tigers a 14-6 lead at half time.
It took just four minutes for the first try of the second half when James Clare crossed over after some quick hands by Rankin and Peter Mata’utia to give the Tigers a 20-6 lead.
The Robins hit back moments later when Masoe crossed over for his second of the game in a similar fashion to the first try.
Tigers halfback Jake Trueman supplied an assist for the try of the game when he placed a chip kick over the Rovers defence, with Eden collecting it to touch down and all but seal the game for Castleford.
Chris Clarkson produced a piece of magic when he broke through the Rovers defence, putting on the afterburners to touch down for his first try in amber and black.
It was Tim Sheens’ Rovers who scored the final try of the game though when Atkin touched down after Mata’utia let the ball bounce.
Rovers struggle with Tigers attack
Hull KR have struggled to adapt this season despite entering the match with Castleford in fifth place and they could not manage the ruthless Castleford attack. However, they showed good determination themselves and showed good elements at times.
Trueman keeps on improving
Jake Trueman has been a shining light in the Tigers squad this season and has produced some magic moments. With Luke Gale out injured for the entirety of the season, Trueman has been trusted by Daryl Powell and it has shown to be a good move.
The youngster has a rugby league brain able to find out players with perfect kicks, something which was seen when he kicked over the top to Eden against Rovers. He will certainly be one to watch for the rest of the season.
Castleford cement themselves as Super League contenders
Having won their previous three games, Castleford have somewhat flown under the radar, with their biggest test of the season to come next week against the Warrington Wolves. The Tigers came into the season with a number of injuries with fans believing the Tigers form from previous years could potentially drop.
Their performances from the opening four rounds have shown they have cemented themselves as potential contenders for the Super League title.
Rovers are returning to previous form
Despite the defeat to the Tigers, Hull KR fans can be proud of how their side have played so far this season, especially considering they finished in the Qualifiers last season. However, they find themselves just outside the play-offs and as stated previously, they have the qualities to potentially push sides in the future and have a balance in attack and defence.
Castleford Tigers 32
Tries: Rankin, Watts, Eden 2, Clare, Clarkson
Goals: McShane, Rankin 3
Drop Goals: n/a
Hull KR 16
Tries: Masoe 2, Atkin
Goals: Shaw 2
Drop Goals: n/a
Castleford: Mata’utia, Clare, Minikin, Shenton, Eden, Trueman, Rankin, Watts, McShane, Millington, Sene-Lefao, Clarkson, Massey.
Interchanges: Moors, Cook, Egodo, O’Neill.
Hull KR: Dagger, Shaw, Keinhorst, Vaivai, Hall, McGuire, Drinkwater, Jewitt, Lee, Masoe, Linnett, Addy, Hauraki.
Interchanges: Mulhern, Greenwood, Atkin, Lannon.