Castleford swoop for fullback following Catalans defeat

Castleford Tigers have reacted quickly to their defeat to Catalans by signing Toronto Wolfpack fullback Gareth O’Brien.

TotalRL understands the Tigers have struck a deal that will see O’Brien join the club on a season-long loan.

The Tigers suffered a heavy defeat to Catalans on their return to action, going down 40-14 to the Dragons.

Greg Eden was played at fullback in the absence of Jordan Rankin, who was the club’s regular fullback before lockdown. But Rankin has now left the club for personal reasons and is with Parramatta Eels in the NRL.

The build-up to their return was built around the fullback position, with Powell ultimately going with Eden, who has made his name as a free-scoring winger.

But the Tigers wrapped up a deal for O’Brien within 36 hours of their defeat at Headingley and O’Brien is set to take up the role for the rest of the year.

Daryl Powell is understood to be an admirer of the former Salford man, who produced one of the most famous moments in Super League history with his golden point drop goal to keep the Red Devils up in the 2016 Million Pound Game.

Castleford were linked with O’Brien before his move to Toronto but they have now got their man with the Wolfpack not playing this season.

They have allowed all of their players to find new clubs for the rest of the season and have said they will honour their contracts in that team.

That has allowed Castleford to make a move and they are expected to announce his arrival, along with that of Halifax forward Dan Fleming, early this week.

The Tigers have been linked with an early move for Niall Evalds but that now appears a non-starter, with Evalds to join Cas next year.