Cas capture Kiwi star
Castleford Tigers have stepped up their plans for 2007 with the capture of former New Zealand Test forward Awen Guttenbeil.
The 30-year-old New Zealand Warriors second rower, who won 10 caps with the Kiwis, has signed a two-year contract with the Tigers and becomes their second high-profile recruit for next season.
On Tuesday, the club signed Australia Test utility player Shaun Timmins on a two-year deal from St George Illawarra.
"Awen's playing great footie over there for the Warriors," said coach Terry Matterson. "He's going to be great for us.
"He was keen to finish his career over here. He's a really good trainer and has looked after himself."
The Tigers, who moved five points clear of Wakefield with their 31-30 win over Leeds Rhinos on Sunday, say there are no more signings imminent for 2007 but insist preparations are well advanced.
"We're looking all the time," added Matterson. "But we feel we're six months ahead of where we were last year. We've 15 or 16 players signed up and we're in a really good position.
"We've got some people still playing for contracts, which is probably ideal in the situation that we're in."
More immediately, Matterson has not given up hope of finding a replacement for winger Waine Pryce, who has been ruled out of the remaining seven matches with a broken leg.
The club remain in the market for an outside back but time is running out ahead of Friday's signing deadline.
"It's a tough one to juggle," said Matterson. "We're hanging on a knife edge injury-wise at the moment. We've got Deon Bird hopefully back this week but we're very slim.
"We've looked really hard but haven't found the right person. We've still got 48 hours though."