Wakefield Trinity chief executive Michael Carter says the club has targeted Challenge Cup glory this year and their revised draw in the last 16 will not deter their ambition.
Trinity were one of the four clubs given a sixth-round tie after the RFL decided to do a redraw, following the withdrawal of the five remaining Championship and League 1 clubs, as well as Toronto, that had all featured in the original sixth-round draw.
Wakefield were drawn to play Catalans on August 22nd, a weekend the two clubs had coincidentally been planning to face off, with the two clubs still having a rearranged game to play that was postponed before the season went into lockdown.
It’s far from an ideal situation for either club, but Carter says it will not stifle Trinity’s hopes of reaching Wembley for the first time in over 40 years.
“Look, it is what it is and we’ll accept that,” Carter said.
“There were no easy solutions for the RFL and they had a lot to consider. Primarily, I think they had to change it as there was going to be a bye into the semi-final.
“But despite this not being a normal year and there’s the possibility of nobody being there, I wouldn’t care an inch if it meant Wakefield were at Wembley.
“It’s still a Challenge Cup Final, Wakefield haven’t been there since 1979 and are the only club that hasn’t been to a final in the Super League era that is still in the competition now.
“I think it’s a massive opportunity for us. Catalans will be tough and Salford will be exactly the same. There’s no easy route to the final, but it’s absolutely something we should be targeting and it’s something I have discussed with Chezzy (Chris Chester).
“It’s not a year for resting on our laurels, we’re going for the Challenge Cup and top four.”
Carter also hopes that their aspirations can be achieved with the help of the club’s young talent, who are set to be called upon more than ever, given the hectic schedule.
“We have 34 players and touch wood if we stay injury free, it will give us chance to use some rotations and give players a real good crack who otherwise wouldn’t get it.
“It’s one of the reasons we brought Brad Walker back from Newcastle, to see him in a Super League environment. It’s an ideal opportunity for him as well as others to show what they’re capable of and there are other guys like Jack Croft, Connor Bailey and Lee Kershaw who can really show what they’re about.”
Coral Challenge Cup Sixth Round Draw
Castleford Tigers v Hull FC
Wakefield Trinity v Catalans Dragons
Games to be played at John Smith’s Stadium, Huddersfield, on 22 August with both games to be televised by the BBC
Coral Challenge Cup Quarter Final Draw
Warrington Wolves v St Helens
Leeds Rhinos v Hull Kingston Rovers
Castleford Tigers or Hull FC v Wigan Warriors
Catalans Dragons or Wakefield Trinity v Salford Red Devils
Games to be played on the weekend of 18-20 September, with all matches to be televised either by the BBC or by Sky Sports.
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