Watch as Castleford Tigers' Daryl Powell says 'we'll see if Israel Folau is still any good.'

0
Have your say

Castleford Tigers boss Daryl Powell says his side are ready to see if Israel Folau is “still any good” at rugby league.

READ MORE: Hull KR boss Tony Smith on why he never thought Kevin Sinfield would end up in Leeds Rhinos job

Israel Folau

Israel Folau

Catalans Dragons have named the contorversial dual-code Australia international in their 21-man squad for Saturday’s game in Perpignan and said he will debut.

Castleford have won their opening two Super League games and are looking to make that three from three in the south of France.

Having played and beaten Toronto Wolfpack - and all the hype of Sonny Bill Williams - they know there is going to be plenty of spotlight on Saturday’s game.

Folau was sacked by Rugby Australia last May for making homophobic comments on social media and has not played any rugby for 10 months.

Asked what he expects from the 30-year-old, who he expects to play at right centre, and whether he will be rusty, Powell said: “We’re going to try and make him rusty!

“He’s a big athletic player so similar to Sonny Bill Williams if not the same position.

“It is a bit of the unknown so we have had a look at some footage of him looking at his right foot step which is dominant.

“It’s really hard so we’ve just got to try and focus on ourselves. We’ve had a look at them in that one game (against Huddersfield Giants) but obviously they lost it.

“They conceded some tries from kicks and they wouldn't have been happy with their performance and they haven’t got into any groove so it’s hard for us to look too much into them.

“We have got to go and put them under pressure and play our game.

“Obviously if Israel Folau is going to play - and I think he will - he hasn’t played rugby league for 10 years.

“So, you want to see if he’s still any good at it. We’ll have a good go at that, I think.”

Castleford welcome back a raft of players after last week's hard-fought win against Wigan.

"We get a few boys back this week after head knocks so George Griffin and Tyla Hepi come back in and Mike McMeeken is fit, too," added Powell.

"Pete Mata'utia will be back for next Friday's game after suspension so from my perspective some really strong players are coming in to create a real competitive environment and that brings the best out of players.

"Adam Milner won’t be fit this week. He’s got a little bit of something he’s picked up in training and will probably miss the next two weeks but we’re looking strong."

Lewis Tierney has recovered from a facial fracture and could return for the Dragons, whose lengthy injury list includes fellow backs David Mead and Tom Davies.