Castleford in talks with QLT over new deal to remain at the Tigers in 2019

Castleford coach Daryl Powell has revealed the Tigers are in talks with Quentin Laulu-Togaga’e over a new contract.

The fullback has been a revelation since joining from Championship side Halifax earlier this season, and appears to be the answer to their season-long problem at fullback.

And the 33-year-old’s form looks set to earn him a new deal with the Tigers in 2019.

Powell said: “We’ve spoke to him about a new contract. We’re going through all the process of making sure everything is right for him and us and hopefully he’ll be with us next year. 

“There’s no concrete decision yet, we’re still discussing it with Q. But he’s been a great addition, and he’s fitted in so well to the way we play.”

Powell, who has seen Laulu-Togaga’e first-hand for a number of years during his time in the Championship as Featherstone coach, also admits he’s surprised it’s taken until now for someone to take a chance on the Samoan.

However, he insists the signing of QLT has proven his theory in signing players from the second tier can pay off.

“I’m surprised it’s taken this long,” he said. 

“But I saw him play a lot for Featherstone, and I spoke to Mark Aston about him just before he went to Toronto, and Warrington had a little look at him then but for whatever reason, it didn’t go through. 

“I’m not one who’s cautious in signing players from the Championship; I’m confident in getting players from that level. I’ve done it before and I will do it again. I don’t know why other teams are cautious – look at how well he’s done. It has surprised me it’s taken until now for someone to give him a chance.”

Powell also admits that he’s been impressed by how quickly QLT has settled into life as a Super League player following his step-up from the Championship.

He said: “The way we play suits his game. He’s been around a long time and his rugby league intuition is very sharp. He picked our game up very quick and he understands it reasonably well. I was surprised at how quick he’s fitted in too because it’s been almost instantaneous, really.”