This week’s Blast From The Past see’s Castleford take on St Helens at the Mend A Hose Jungle in one of the games of the 2015 season.
Both teams coming into this match had been on winning streaks and one the teams would lose that winning streak. Both squads welcomed back players from injury with Luke Walsh coming back after suffering an ankle injury and Justin Carney and Matt Cook returning for the Castleford Tigers.
Before the match Castleford head coach Darryl Powell had this to say: “It’s good that we are getting some players back from injury now which will potentially freshen us up. We have some smart players coming back into the team over the next few weeks which will obviously help us.”
Both squads were at their strongest for this all or nothing match up and looked like this:
Castleford Tigers: Ryan Bailey, Ryan Boyle, Justin Carney, Matt Cook, Liam Finn, Luke Gale, Ashley Gibson, Oliver Holmes, Andy Lynch, Mike McMeeken, Nathan Massey, Grant Millington, Adam Milner, Scott Moore, Junior Moors, Ben Roberts, Michael Shenton, Denny Solomona, Jake Webster.
St Helens: Kyle Amor, Travis Burns, Matty Dawson, Mark Flanagan, Joe Greenwood, Josh Jones, Louie McCarthy-Scarsbrook, Shannon McDonnell, Mose Masoe, Mark Percival, Greg Richards, James Roby, Andre Savelio, Adam Swift, Luke Thompson, Jordan Turner, Alex Walmsley, Luke Walsh, Jon Wilkin.
It would be the Castleford Tigers who would strike first blood thanks to returnee Justin Carney who barged past the Saints defence to touch down in the left hand corner just after the 5 minute mark. Luke Gale stepped up to take the conversion but failed which left the Tigers at a 4-0 lead.
St Heles then hit back less than 5 minutes later thanks to Australia Luke Walsh who managed to receive a grubber kick and touch down underneath the sticks to bring the scores level with Mark Percival converting for the Saints.
The next few minutes saw both teams giving their all , however it was to the Saints once again who would score thanks to Alex Walmsley who slid over to take the score to 12-4.
Castleford then scored the try of the game thanks to Denny Solomona who intercepted a St Helens pass and ran the full length of the field to bring the score back to 12-10 an give the Tigers a glimmer of hope.
Joe Greenwood then rubbed salt into Castleford’s wound with the last try of the first half in the 30th minute to extend the Saints lead to 18-10.
Castleford started the second half like they had done the first thanks to Jake Webster who powered himself over the line like he has done time and time again to bring the Tigers within two points. Then in the 59th minute Matt Cook scrambled over the line to extend the Tigers lead to 22-18 with 21 minutes to go.
The Saints managed to take the lead once again in this action packed match this time with Shannon McDonnell going over giving the Saints a 24-22 lead. Castleford were then given a penalty in front of the sticks to level things up at 24-24 with Luke Gale converting this penalty to take the game into “drop goal” territory.
Both teams new that the next 5 minutes could make or break the game when in the 78th minute Ben Roberts knocked on following a Tigers scrum which handed the ball to the Saints all they had to do was kick the ball between the stick to win. However St Helens then knocked on themselves. This would make the last minute of the match the greatest minute ever witness at the Mend A Hose Jungle.
The clock was winding down as the Tigers had possession 30 metres out when Millinton made an offload to Webster who then passed across to Liam Finn who ran another ten metres to bring Castleford within drop goal distance.
Mike Mcmeeken then passed the ball to Ben Roberts who with his left foot and the last kick of the game scored a drop goal to give the Tigers a 25-24 win and send the Wheldon Road crowd into a frenzy.