Widnes host Castleford on Sunday at the Select Security Stadium, looking to end a run of three straight Super League defeats.
After the Vikings’ brilliant start to the season, Denis Betts’ men have somewhat lost their way, suffering three straight defeats to Warrington, St Helens and Catalan respectively.
During the same period, they were also without mainstay Kevin Brown, Chris Bridge, Stefan Marsh and more first team regulars.
The good news for the home side this week is the return of Brown, who has been the creator for much of Widnes’ outstanding attacking play so far this year.
Centre Chris Bridge also returns, but partner Charly Runciman and winger Stefan Marsh are two absentees who Betts would have liked to see play today..
Castleford have had a fairly mixed season so far – their last five results have seen them lose three times, including a heavy 56-12 defeat by Warrington. However, the Tigers have won two out of their last three games, over struggling outfits Leeds and Huddersfield.
Daryl Powell’s men have lots of in-form players, namely winger Jy Hitchcox, who scored a hat-trick against Huddersfield, and centre Jake Webster, who has recently penned a new deal to stay at the Mend-a-Hose Jungle.
As far as previous match-ups go, Castleford have dominated Widnes in the last five meetings, winning four times. But in the corresponding fixture last season, it was Widnes who took both points at home with 46-16 victory.
Widnes Vikings 19-man sqaud
Ah Van, Bridge, Brooks, Brown, Dean, Dudson, Gerrard, Gilmore, Hanbury, Heremaia, Houston, Leuluai, Manuokafoa, Mellor, O’Carroll, Sa, Thompson, White, Whitley
Castleford Tigers 19-man squad
Monaghan, Webster, Solomona, Gale, Lynch, Milner, McMeeken, Massey, Jewitt, McShane, Cook, Hampshire, Boyle, Springer, Maher, Minikin, Holmes, Gill, Fitzsimmons