Smith: Focus on what we need to do
WolvesTV catch up with head of coaching and rugby Tony Smith to reflect on last weekend's cup defeat and ahead to the team's single focus of Super League and the play-offs.
On last Sunday's performance he said: "It wasn't a case of throwing the towel in by any means. I thought we had a really good start to the game; we got some momentum going and then probably lost some of that and failed to get it back and take control. There wasn't much between the two teams; Hull were just a little bit better in some areas and deserved their win. Out players hung in there and we were probably guilty of trying too hard in some respects to try and pinch the game instead of building some composure and pressure. But that's learning and we will learn from that as a group and hopefully it will inspire us for future games and situations of a similar nature. It flattened us for a couple of days but it's important that we bounce back."
As we enter the business end of the season Tony and the team now have a single focus.
"We would have loved to have had the distraction of the cup like we have in the past, however we can now be single minded in terms of the remaining fixtures and the finals and really focus on what we need to do. It's not the way we planned to do it but it's the way it's turned out. We can hopefully use the loss in the cup to inspire us to be good in those other areas."
On this week's opponents away from home he added: "Castleford are a dangerous team and are able to score points. They have some exceptionally talented players in their midst and they've had some good performances throughout the season. It's a difficult place to go to; a very hostile little ground. The fans are right on top of everybody there and it's very intimidating. The pitch is a small pitch as well; there's not much room for error. We've had some mixed experiences there in the past but hopefully we can handle it well this weekend."
And on those available for selection this weekend Tony runs through the fitness of the squad following last week.
"There will be a couple of changes, most of our players are fit and healthy. Richie Myler, he'll be available this week along with Ben Harrison. We'll definitely be without Mike Cooper who has a strain to his knee, only grade one so only a couple of weeks, and Hodgo won't be playing this week as he's been carrying a little bit of knee into games. We'll probably give Michael Monaghan a bit of a break as well. Aside from that everybody else is fit and healthy and raring to go."
This week has seen the squad take their training on the road on two occasions. Earlier this week the squad visited Grappenhall Cricket Club to compete in a charity event alongside many England and Australia legends.
"It was a welcome distraction and a way of getting us back out in the public eye so soon after a defeat; sometimes you can mope around and feel sorry for yourself but I think the players did a great job. They went out there and had some fun together, had a laugh and showed some of their cricketing expertise or lack of at times; a real mix. There might be a couple of call-ups for a couple of the Aussies in the national team but the English boys are well and truly covered at the moment."
The squad followed that up with a One Community training session in association with local club Latchford Albion.
"Once again it was good to get out in public, particularly at our grassroots. It has been important to us this year; doing visits to each of our local clubs and getting some interaction there. I think it's really important for the amateur clubs to see some of the role models of Super League from their local town but it's also important for our players to see their grassroots and revisit some of the places they have either come through, or similar, and give something back to the community."
Match tickets for this fixture are on sale now in WolfWare, at WolfWare Online and on the ticket hotline 08448 11 11 76 (Mon-Fri 9am-5pm). Tickets are priced at £11 junior/conc and £19 adult.
Club coach travel is also available priced at £11.50 junior and £13.50 adult, scheduled to depart Dallam Lane at 1pm and returning at full time. Coach tickets can be booked in store or online.
(photos courtesy of swpix)
31, Jul, 2013