Super League: Castleford Tigers v St Helens cancelled as Tigers unable to name squad

The Jungle, Castleford
Wednesday’s Super League fixture was due to take place at Castleford’s Mend-A-Hose Jungle

Castleford’s Super League fixture against St Helens has been cancelled and Saints awarded the win after Tigers were unable to name a 17-man squad.

Champions St Helens have been awarded a 24-0 victory for Wednesday’s match which was due to be a dress rehearsal for the Challenge Cup final on 17 July.

The Rugby Football League say “an unusual range of circumstances” have left Cas unable to name their squad.

But the threshold for a Covid-19 postponement has not been met.

In order for a fixture to be rearranged, a club need to have seven senior players unavailable as a direct result of positive tests or as close contacts.

As well as a lengthy injury list among the senior squad, Cas have a number of young players with first-team experience unavailable due to being close contacts of a single positive Covid-19 case.

The Tigers’ academy squad have also been advised to isolate as a result of two further positive cases.

Castleford, who fielded a weakened side against Catalans Dragons last Thursday, confirmed captain Michael Shenton suffered a knee injury in the 16-6 defeat.

Paul McShane, Peter Mata’utia and Suaia Matagi all picked up knocks in the England v Combined Nations All Stars game on Friday.

“The Tigers have just 14 first-team players available for selection for the fixture on Wednesday,” a statement on their website said.

“Due to injuries and following a young player within the first-team environment testing positive for Covid-19, seven other players have needed to be stood down due to contact tracing protocols.”

Wednesday’s fixture is the seventh to fall victim of the coronavirus pandemic in Super League in 2021, but the first to be cancelled.

Three of the other six postponed matches have been found new dates.

It was decided last season that league positions will be determined by win percentage in the event not all fixtures are completed.

A club must play at least 18 matches to qualify for the top-six play-offs.


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