Castleford Tigers recruitment update as Craig Lingard makes 2025 admission

Drew Darbyshire
Craig Lingard Castleford Tigers Alamy

Castleford Tigers head coach Craig Lingard

Castleford Tigers coach Craig Lingard has provided a recruitment update, saying he doesn’t envisage the club making any further signings this season.

Last week, the Tigers announced the release of back-rower Charbel Tasipale on compassionate grounds to allow him to return to Australia.

And the departure of the Lebanon international has freed up a quota spot amongst their ranks, but speaking in his press conference ahead of Friday’s trip to St Helens, Lingard has admitted that he doesn’t think the club will be making any further recruitment until prior to the 2025 campaign.

When asked about possible replacements for Tasipale, Lingard replied: “It’ll more likely be next season now. As much as we want to get people in now, particularly with Woody (Sam Wood) being out for the season and Josh Hodson being out and not knowing the time limit on that, I’d love to bring some people in this season but I don’t think the finances are there for us to do that this season.”

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Meanwhile, Lingard says he would love to extend the loan agreement of Matty English for the remainder of the season, with the Huddersfield Giants prop having impressed in his two appearances at the Tigers so far.

“I think he’s still got another week left (here on loan) at the minute,” Lingard said. “I’d love to extend Matty’s loan – but he’s not our player – he’s Huddersfield’s player so I guess it depends on how Huddersfield are travelling and what bodies they’ve got available and how they’re performing to decide whether they call him back or not.

“We’d love to extend him for the season if we possibly could but he’s not our player, so it’s not something we’ve got control over, but we’d certainly like to extend him as long as we can.”

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Lingard also said he would be open to the idea of promising young fullback Fletcher Rooney heading out on loan or dual-registration after showing good signs of progress in the reserves after recovering from an ankle injury earlier this year.

“He’s going really well,” Lingard said of Rooney. “Obviously he had that long injury at the start of the season, he was out for a good three months or so and it has taken him a little bit of a while to get back into it.

“He’s played in the reserves and is scoring regularly in the reserves. I’d love to get him out on loan or dual-reg to get him some game-time in a first team environment if I possibly could, so he’s always there for any teams (in the Championship or League 1) if they are looking for a real up and coming talent.

“I think he’s got a real future in the game has Fletch, so hopefully we can get him some first team rugby between now and the end of the season.”

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