Strong Performance

NATHAN Brown expects his side to produce a strong performance at Castleford following their disappointing loss to Hull KR last Friday.

He reiterated the comments ahead of this Sunday’s clash at the Wish Communications Stadium.

“The reality was we played bad wet weather football and they played smart wet weather football,” he said. “We expected to do better on the back of our two previous performances and we competed hard to give ourselves a chance, but didn’t kick well or play to the conditions.

“Hull KR didn’t play a great deal better, but they kicked the ball early and put it on the ground.

“We could have had Sonny Bill Williams on the right and it wouldn’t have mattered as we didn’t play smart. Poor old Stuart (Howarth) copped fair amount of flak but he didn’t get a chance to have an impact on the game. It’s probably not fair on him and he played with a nasty injury too. There’s a certain type of footy to play in wet weather and we didn’t do it.”

He continued: “I’ve been involved at several clubs where there has been big change – we went through mass change twice at St George – but I know what we are doing here is right. However, the reality is the squad is fit and more than capable of doing well if we all buy in together.

“When players are leaving it can go two ways – it can finish bad or players can go out on a high. A lot of it has to come from within the group and the departing players.

“One we have just announced, Francis Meli, told the boys last week he was leaving but he wants to have a big finish.

“But the reality is people know there are a lot of players going and we have young kids and well documented ones coming in. But everyone would agree with the players we have fit, if we hadn’t have lost them in the long term, we would have won our fair share of games and we wouldn’t be having these conversations.

“It’s no coincidence that when we got James Roby and Jonny Lomax back, Jon Wilkin returned from suspension and Gaz O’Brien came in we had good results. That’s why the weekend was disappointing. I’m still optimistic for the end of the year but we have to play well.

“We have a lot to play for going forward. The boys take pride in how they play and I’m sure there will be a statement on Sunday.”

Saints face a Castleford side fresh off the back of a win over Wigan on Sunday – but Brown wants his charges to focus on their own performance.

“If we play how we can then we will be hard to beat,” he added. “Daryl (Powell) has done well since he went there and Rangi Chase is a great player but we have to concentrate on doing the stuff we can do well.”

Tickets for Sunday’s game remain on sale from the Ticket Office at Langtree Park and details are here.

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