Mark Applegarth rules out Castleford Tigers distraction for Wakefield Trinity at Hull FC

Mark Applegarth insists the upcoming clash with Castleford Tigers has not even crossed his mind as he prepares Wakefield Trinity for Sunday's trip to Hull FC.

Trinity head into round 21 level on points with Castleford at the bottom of Super League after claiming a stunning win over Warrington Wolves last weekend.

The West Yorkshire rivals will lock horns on the other side of the Challenge Cup break in a crucial game in the battle to stay in the top flight.

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Applegarth only has eyes for Hull as Wakefield look to avoid a repeat of their flat performance at Huddersfield Giants last time out on the road.

"I remember someone asking me about games coming up three weeks ago and I said they're all irrelevant if we don't focus on what we're doing here and now," said the Trinity boss during Friday’s press conference.

"Nothing has changed. We're taking each week at a time and just making sure that we're happy with the performance we put in that week.

"We were really happy with last week but hopefully we've learned a lesson from the Huddersfield performance after the Wigan game when some of the standards we've been setting for ourselves weren't quite there.

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"Hull FC is a completely new challenge. They're a team striving for the play-offs. We're not even looking past them because that's how you end up getting burnt."

Mark Applegarth only has eyes for Hull. (Photo: Allan McKenzie/ Applegarth only has eyes for Hull. (Photo: Allan McKenzie/
Mark Applegarth only has eyes for Hull. (Photo: Allan McKenzie/

The August 18 date with Castleford is one of four remaining games for Wakefield at Belle Vue, where they have won four matches in a row.

Trinity have to go back to August 2022 for their last victory on the road but Applegarth is not spending any time worrying about his side's away record.

"We've just been talking about making sure we can look each other in the eye and be happy with our performance," he added.

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"Whether that's home or away is irrelevant to us; we just want to make sure we're putting in a performance.

Wakefield celebrate Liam Hood's try against Warrington. (Photo: John Clifton/ celebrate Liam Hood's try against Warrington. (Photo: John Clifton/
Wakefield celebrate Liam Hood's try against Warrington. (Photo: John Clifton/

"It's always nice to have your home crowd cheering you on and we felt like we owed them one after the Huddersfield game."

Applegarth was able to name an unchanged 21-man squad for the first time this year, while Jai Whitbread, Josh Griffin, Hugo Salabio and Romain Franco are all set to be available for the visit of Castleford.

Will Dagger and Liam Kay are back in contention after missing the game against Warrington with knocks to leave Applegarth with a selection dilemma.

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"It's a luxury I've not had all year so I'd rather have some of those headaches than some of the headaches we've had in previous weeks," said Applegarth.

"It's a lot better position to be in than struggling to name a 17-man squad."

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