Tigers star ready to rise to semi-final challenge
Daryl Clark cannot wait to take on Widnes Vikings in the Tetley’s Challenge Cup semi-final at Leigh Sports Village on Sunday when the hooker will take special pride in representing his hometown club.
The Tigers head into Sunday’s game knowing that a win will take them to their first Challenge Cup final in 22 years, and the chance to win Rugby League’s most historic and prestigious competition for the first time since 1986.
“This is what you play the game for – Sunday will probably be the biggest game of my career,” said Clark. “I have grown up in Castleford and grew up supporting my hometown club so Sunday will be that extra bit special for me.
“It should be an awesome atmosphere and I would expect to see the majority of Castleford fans there.
“There has been a long time between the quarter-final and the semi-final and Daryl Powell has told us to try and put it to the back of our minds, which has been hard to do but now the tie is nearly here we are just trying to enjoy the week and enjoy the build-up to Sunday.”
Between Castleford and Wembley stand Widnes, who themselves are looking for a first final appearance for 21 years, but Clark doesn’t want anything to distract from what is an important game.
“You can’t take league form into account, or anything else, especially with a place in a Wembley final at stake,” said Clark.
“The game will be different to a league match and it would be massive for both us and Widnes to reach the final. We have not been there for a long time so it will be nice to see a different team in the final.
“Now if we win we’ll be in the final for the first time in 20 years but with Sunday being such an important game, we are not looking ahead of it.”
Tickets for the Tetley’s Challenge Cup semi-final between Widnes and Castleford are now completely sold out. Tickets for the final will go on sale from the winning club from Monday (August 11). Fans can guarantee their place at Rugby League’s most prestigious event now by purchasing tickets directly from the RFL.
Extra staff will man the phones at the Rugby League Ticket Hotline over weekend to meet what is expected to be massive demand from supporters of the winning team from Saturday’s semi-final, Leeds Rhinos v Warrington Wolves, and Sunday’s clash between Widnes and Castleford.
Tickets for the 2014 Tetley’s Challenge Cup final at Wembley Stadium on Saturday August 23 cost from as little as £22 and can be purchased by calling the 24-hour Rugby League Ticket Hotline on 0844 856 1113 or by visiting www.rugbyleaguetickets.co.uk