Catalans Dragons vs Castleford Tigers Preview

The Lowdown

CATALANS DRAGONS

  • For the second week in a row, Catalans fell away towards the end of the game as St. Helens defeated the Dragons 46-28, but that didn't reflect how the game had gone up until the final quarter.
  • The Dragons went ahead early on and were in front for most of the game, but conceded 26 points in the final 23 minutes to lose their 10th Super League game in their last 12.
  • Steve McNamara makes just one change to his 19-man squad with Ben Garcia once again available after he served a ban - Alrix Da Costa is the man who makes way.

Head Coach: Steve McNamara

Squad: Paul Aiton, Lucas Albert, Louis Anderson, Jason Baitieri, Greg Bird, Julian Bousquet, Jodie Broughton, Remi Casty, Vincent Duport, Ben Garcia, Tony Gigot, Justin Horo, Krisnan Inu, Thibaut Margalet, Sam Moa, Richie Myler, Romain Navarrete, Lewis Tierney, Luke Walsh, Fouad Yaha

Unavailable: Oliver Holmes (Knee), Junior Moors (Knee), Jake Webster (Ribs), Adam Milner (Ankle), Greg Eden (Shoulder), Larne Patrick (Injured)

CASTLEFORD TIGERS

  • Castleford remained eight points clear at the top of the Super League table with a comfortable win over Salford Red Devils last weekend, but the win came at a cost.
  • Super League's top scorer Greg Eden suffered a potentially season-ending shoulder injury during the Salford game, with results due on the severity of the injury over the weekend. In some better news for Cas, Daryl Powell is able to welcome back Matt Cook from a knee injury.
  • Castleford will end the regular season with a commanding lead heading into the Super 8s having won their last 11 Super League games, but perhaps even more impressively, amassing an average of 31 points per game over that period.

Head Coach: Daryl Powell

Squad: Matt Cook, Alex Foster, Luke Gale, Zak Hardaker, Jy Hitchcox, Tom Holmes, Kevin Larroyer, Andy Lynch, Nathan Massey, Mike McMeeken, Paul McShane, Grant Millington, Greg Minikin, Joel Monaghan, Ben Roberts, Jesse Sene-Lefao, Michael Shenton, Gadwin Springer, Jake Trueman

Unavailable: Oliver Holmes (Knee), Junior Moors (Knee), Jake Webster (Ribs), Adam Milner (Ankle), Greg Eden (Shoulder), Larne Patrick (Injured)

Analysis - what to expect
The form of these two sides couldn't contrast much further with Catalans losing 10 from their last 12 in Super League whereas Cas have won their last 11 in the league. The Dragons now face a battle to retain their top-flight status in the Middle 8s but will need to find some form and quick. The Tigers on the other hand are heading towards a semi-final spot that could be confirmed in just a few weeks' time. Whilst Cas are extremely strong at home, their away form isn't quite as solid but they have still managed to rack up the points on their travels with them averaging 26.1 points a game. Catalans have won seven of the last eight Super League meetings between the two at the Stade Gilbert Brutus, but this is a game that is likely to buck that trend as Castleford march on.