By Rachel Arnett (images swpix)
Warrington Wolves went into this game looking to bounce back from last week’s narrow defeat and cause an upset to Castleford’s, so far, unbeaten run in 2019.
The Wire line-up had a new look ahead of this game; the big news being the long-awaited return of Ben Currie from injury. Also new in the 17 from last week was Ben Westwood off the bench. Mamo starting on the wing in place of Lineham with King at centre for Atkins.
It was just the one change for the Tigers, Alex Foster in for the suspended Grant Millington, with Junior Moors moving onto the bench.
The momentum of the first half switched; the Tigers taking the early control before the Wire hit back with three unanswered tries of their own through a brace from Mamo and one from Hughes minutes from half time.
The home side managed to keep the edge in the second half, the highlight being the barnstorming charge from Murdoch-Masila to score his try.
Stefan Ratchford, Jake Mamo, Bryson Goodwin, Toby King, Josh Charnley, Blake Austin, Declan Patton, Chris Hill, Daryl Clark, Mike Cooper, Ben Currie, Jack Hughes, Lama Tasi
Subs: Ben Murdoch-Masila, Ben Westwood, Joe Philbin, Jason Clark
Tries: Mamo (2), Hughes, Murdoch-Masila
Goals: Ratchford (4)
Peter Mata’utia-Leifi, James Clare, Greg Minikin, Michael Shenton, Greg Eden, Jake Trueman, Jordan Rankin, Liam Watts, Paul McShane, Junior Moors, Jesse Sene-Lefao, Chris Clarkson, Nathan Massey
Subs: Alex Foster, Matt Cook, Tuoyo Egodo, Jacques O’Neill
Tries: Eden, Minikin
After an even opening seven minutes the Tigers struck with the first try of the night. A kick to the corner from McShane was left to bounce, tapped back and Eden was first to react and find the space to the line. The conversion was missed. 0-4. A fumble close to the line by McShane denied them a second soon after.
On 20 minutes the Wire struck through Mamo in the corner. On the back of a penalty for holding down the home side took the attack. Hill helping to drive the side forward and a looping pass out to the edge by Patton set up the score. The board stayed level though at 4-4 after Ratchford missed with the boot from the touchline.
As the half-hour mark approached a grubber kick from Austin was played at and the Wire had a repeat set from 10 metes out. They took full advantage with another long pass out to the left edge for Mamo’s second. Ratchford was on target this time. 10-4
And with four minutes to the break Hughes twisted round the defenders to cross for the Wire’s third, after a great mid-air take from Mamo. Ratchford landed the conversion to take the lead to 16-4.
The Wire got the first points on the board in the second half adding a penalty off Ratchford’s boot. 18-4
Under the pressure of Wire defenders Shenton clean dropped the ball, while close to the Tigers scoring, to turn possession over to the home side from the scrum.
What a charge to the line from Murdoch-Masila on 50 minutes. He was taking everyone with him, determined to get that try. A quick look by the video referee and try it was! And the goal was good too. 24-4
Castleford had a response of their own as the final quarter approached. Minikin down their right edge, tucking in over the try line to score. Rankin was on target this time. 24-10. This gave the visitors some of their attacking spark back to test the Wire defence which stood strong.