TWO OUTSTANDING talents at opposite ends of their career will provide an intriguing subplot when Castleford Tigers play host to Hull KR in Super League tonight.
It could be eight-time Grand Final winner Danny McGuire’s last game at Wheldon Road, before the Rovers stand-off retires at the end of this season, while Castleford’s Jake Trueman is just setting out on what has the potential to be an equally glittering path.
Having made his debut in 2017 Trueman was Super League’s young player of the year last term and has been in inspirational form during Castleford’s positive start to the season.
Trueman has had extra weight on his shoulders following the pre-season injury Achilles injury which is expected to keep Luke Gale out of competitive action until next year and Tigers coach Daryl Powell observed: “He’s just 20 now and you look at him doing what he does and being such a threat, he is a natural rugby league player.
“He’s doing a great job, nothing seems to bother him or faze him. He is such a calm kid, he doesn’t get over-hyped about anything, he stays nice and level.
“I think the players help him as well, he gets a lot of support from the more experienced players and he can handle himself on a rugby league field.
“That’s clear to see whether it’s with the ball or without the ball.”
McGuire, who was handed his Super League debut by Powell in 2001, has a history of putting in big performances against Castleford and was man of the match in the 2017 Grand Final when he ended his Leeds Rhinos career with a win against their near-neighbours. Powell regards him as a threat tonight and believes Rovers have been playing better than their 50 per cent record from four matches suggests.
“Danny McGuire’s in there and they’ve added a big man in Mitch Garbutt, also from Leeds,” warned the Tigers coach. “He has been really good for them.
“Jimmy Keinhorst is also in there from Leeds and they are a dangerous team. We have to play well.”
He’s doing a great job, nothing seems to bother him or faze him. He is such a calm kid, he doesn’t get over-hyped about anything, he stays nice and level.Castleford coach Daryl Powell
Castleford will be without loose-forward Adam Milner who has a foot injury and three players, Cory Aston, Jacques O’Neill and Lewis Peachey, are in contention for a senior debut.
Tigers captain Michael Shenton, whose contract was due to expire in the autumn, has signed a new deal until the end of 2021.