Castleford coach Daryl Powell said some of his players are in for a long week after they were given a ‘rude awakening’ on the opening night of their 2018 campaign.
The Tigers suffered the heaviest loss of the opening round so far on Friday night, being comprehensively beaten 46-6 by an impressive St Helens side.
And Powell pulled no punches at his own side’s performance afterwards.
He said: “It was pretty poor, wasn’t it. I thought St Helens were excellent; they put us under a lot of pressure and ran harder and tougher. I just thought we were shocking from about the fourth minute pretty much onwards. It was a shocking performance, and a good one from Saints.
“We knew they’d challenge us, I just didn’t expect such a poor attitude from us.
“There was no sign of it; we prepared pretty well and our pre-season games have been alright. It was a little bit of a rude awakening, and it was a poor performance.”
Powell also said few of his players came out of the game with any credit – and slammed his pack’s effort as ‘terrible’.
He said: “I thought both wingers and Oli Holmes had a real dig but our pack was terrible, appalling. They’re going to have a fair bit of work to do over the coming week.
“It’s (the dressing room) pretty quiet, they’re disappointed because that’s not our standards. It’s not what you come to expect from this group and it’s a smack in the chops. It’s round one and we’ve got to respond – there’s a long week leading into Widnes and we need to come back and show some toughness which we didn’t have today.”