Chris Chester admitted he was proud of his side’s effort following their narrow defeat to runaway league leaders Castleford on Thursday – before insisting they can still make the top four before the split for the Super 8s.
Wakefield let slip two commanding leads – a 16-0 half-time cushion as well as an eight-point lead in the dying stages – to lose 25-24 to the Tigers in a thrilling local derby which stopped them moving into the top four.
But Chester said that he saw plenty of positives from his side’s performance after pushing Daryl Powell’s side all the way.
He said: “We’re disappointed to lose it in the manner we did but there are lots to be positive about. I thought for large parts we were quite dominant.
“I’m proud of the efforts – I never question the effort and grit of this team – we just needed to be a bit smarter in the last seven minutes when we went in front.
“It’s a tough one to take because it’s a derby but we’re a good side and we can still get in that top four.”
Chester’s side were sensational in the first half – becoming the first team to nil Castleford in a single half this season – before letting their comfortable advantage slip after the restart.
“It was a tale of two halves,” Chester lamented. “It was probably the best 40 minutes we’ve played all season in the first half. We were very aggressive from the kick-off and really took it to their pack and came up with some really good play.
“We let it slip in the second half and didn’t react quick enough to the momentum swing.
“I thought when big Dave (Fifita) went over, we were in for a good night but we just came up short in the last minute.”