RESULTS: 2021 QRL U19 Harvey Norman Girls Round 1
11 hours ago | LeagueUnlimited Media
Andrew Ferguson's Super League review series of all clubs' 2020 campaigns continues - today it's the Castleford Tigers.
The Tigers season started out well as they picked up early wins over heavyweights Wigan and St.Helens to sit in 4th place when the game went into lockdown. Sadly for Castleford though, their season went south fast after the resumption, as they scored just two wins, which saw them slip out of the top 4, then they went into freefall, first out of finals contention and then further south towards the bottom 4.
For a team that had spent all of their previous 6 seasons sitting firmly in the top 6, 2020 came as quite a shock to see the club have its worst season ever under coach Daryl Powell.
Yet despite the sharp downturn in form, Castleford were far from easy beats. 6 of their last 9 losses for the season were by 10 points or less, giving them plenty to work from for next season.
Lockdown. When the game went into lockdown, Castleford had 4 wins and 2 losses (1 of which was by just 1 point), but after the game resumed, they had just 2 wins from 10 games. There were no dramatic squad changes to explain the change in form, but for some reason, nothing clicked at all and they hobbled out of finals contention.
Defence - Despite winning 6 of 16 games, Castleford's defence finished up being ranked 6th in the Super League, just 12 points shy of 5th place. Rebuilding a team around a strong defence is not such an arduous task and will mean that the Tigers are every chance of returning to the finals in 2021.
Scoring tries. While their defence wasn't the worst in 2020 (it was 4th worst), the side struggled to find a regular go-to player to get across the stripe. They had just 7 players score 3 tries or more, with only Huddersfield fairing worse (they had 6)
Paul McShane had arguably his best season, which saw him pick up the Man of Steel award and was also duly rewarded as Castleford's only player in the Super League Dream Team. The skilful rake has quickly become a fan favourite and widely regarded as the club's best player in their current squad.
Castleford gave 5 players their Super League debuts in 2020. Bailey Hodgson (fullback) and Bradley Martin (Bench) played their first and only game against Hull KR, while Sam Hall appeared in Castleford's win over Wigan at the start of the year, winger Bradley Graham played against Hull FC and fellow wing man Jack Sanderson played in 3 games, scoring a try on debut.
Castleford have made some astute tweaks to their roster for 2021. Niall Evalds is a big addition while Jordan Turner will improve the side's depth, as will his Giants team mate Suaia Matagi who will be on loan to the Tigers. Lewis Bienek from Hull FC will also move to Castleford.
The club has lost Mike McMeeken to Catalans and have let Junior Moors go. Bailey Hodgson, Lewis Carr, Calum Turner and Matt Cook are also all departing, taking up places in Championship sides next year.
These changes look to be all about improving the top tier of players which might be enough to see them jump back up into finals contention again in 2021.
|SL R2||Feb 7th||Wigan||W||16 - 12||Powell||Shenton||Mend-A-Hose|
|SL R3||Feb 15th||Catalans||L||18 - 36||Powell||Shenton||Gilbert Brutus|
|SL R4||Feb 21st||Wakefield||W||32 - 15||Powell||Shenton||Mend-A-Hose|
|SL R5||Feb 27th||Hull KR||W||28 - 8||Powell||Shenton||KCOM Craven|
|SL R6||Mar 6th||Warrington||L||8 - 9||Powell||Shenton||Halliwell Jones|
|SL R7||Mar 15th||St Helens||W||28 - 14||Powell||Shenton||Mend-A-Hose|
|SL R8||Aug 8th||Catalans||L||14 - 40||Powell||Shenton||Emerald Headingley|
|SL R9||Aug 16th||St Helens||L||0 - 10||Powell||Shenton||Totally Wicked|
|SL R18||Aug 30th||Wigan||L||22 - 30||Powell||Shenton||Halliwell Jones|
|SL R11||Sep 3rd||Salford||W||37 - 30||Powell||Shenton||Emerald Headingley|
|SL R12||Sep 10th||Warrington||L||10 - 12||Powell||Shenton||Totally Wicked|
|CC 6R||Sep 13th||Hull FC||L||16 - 29||Powell||Shenton||Totally Wicked|
|SL R13||Sep 24th||Huddersfield||L||19 - 31||Powell||Shenton||Halliwell Jones|
|SL R14||Oct 1st||Hull FC||L||28 - 32||Powell||Shenton||Mend-A-Hose|
|SL R15||Oct 18th||Hull FC||L||6 - 48||Powell||Shenton||KCOM Stadium|
|SL R17||Oct 22nd||Hull KR||W||38 - 24||Powell||Shenton||Totally Wicked|
|SL R18||Oct 26th||Leeds||L||24 - 28||Powell||McShane||Emerald Headingley|