Before Jake Mamo even set foot in West Yorkshire, he was already injured. After sustaining a broken ankle whilst holidaying in Bali at the end of the 2016 season, Mamo didn't make his first appearance for Huddersfield Giants until 12 April 2017. The athletic full-back hit the ground running at the John Smiths Stadium when he finally made his debut, scoring 12 tries in nine appearances. Yet again however, a foot injury suffered in late June sidelined him for the rest of the season. The impact Mamo had had for Huddersfield was huge - in the nine games he played in 2017, Mamo proved vital as the Giants moved into the top eight and then consolidated their place.

Mamo was fit and ready to go for the new 2018 season, but just five games in and injury struck once more. Out for a month-and-a-half, Mamo made his return from the sideline in Huddersfield's heavy defeat to Warrington in late April. Although he registered just 29 NRL appearances in three years and has played less than 20 Super League games so far, Mamo's quality when he is actually on the field is plain to see. Plus, he is just 23 years of age. Therefore, with Mamo saying he's "weighing up his options" before making a decision on his future and with Castleford's well-documented problems at full-back, is he worth a punt?

Full-back problems have not gone away

Castleford still seem to be somewhat struggling at the back and have been struggling ever since Zak Hardaker was omitted from the Tigers' Grand Final squad way back in October 2017.

Ben Roberts was given the nod to start the season at No.1, but that decision fell flat rather quickly. Youngster Jake Trueman was slotted in at full-back for the second-half of Castleford's clash against Leeds at Elland Road and has continued to occupy the full-back berth. Though the former Bradford half-back has been solid defensively, he has been unspectacular in attack - it's almost as if you can tell he is not a natural No.1.

Combinations take time to learn, but Castleford's attack still appears disjointed and is a far cry away from the free-flowing flair that fans have been accustomed to over more recent years at the Jungle under Daryl Powell. Trueman is a very talented kid and has an extremely bright future ahead of him, but in the halves. He is good enough to be a short-term solution, but if Castleford want to hit the heights of 2017 once more, a long-term solution needs to be found.

Mamo, at just 23 years of age, could be just that.

Why Mamo could fit right in at Cas

Mamo is a tough, athletic ball-handler with a type of x-factor that suits how Castleford play. He would thrive in the Castleford environment - the Tigers have built up a family ethos around the place that makes it easy for a new recruit to settle in. Coming from Australia and in the process leaving his family, Mamo's transition would not have been easy. And, whilst Huddersfield may have a tight-knit group of players and staff, the togetherness behind the scenes at Castleford could help Mamo take his game to the next level.

Huddersfield also have a new coach - Australian Simon Woolford - whom Mamo encountered at the latter stages of his Newcastle Knights career back in 2016.

But, Woolford was a forwards' coach so Mamo had little interaction with him, whilst ex-Huddersfield boss Rick Stone - Stone coached Mamo at the Knights - was the man who showed faith in the full-back even after his motorbike accident on the Indonesian island of Bali. With Woolford being a player and a coach specialising in the pack, will Mamo really get a chance to thrive in what is likely to be a forward-dominated style of play?

Castleford head coach Daryl Powell is renowned for taking rough diamonds and transforming them into gems - the likes of Mike McMeeken, Greg Minikin, Luke Gale and Paul McShane have all benefitted hugely under Powell's tutelage. And Powell would get the best out of Mamo - that's for sure.


Unfortunately though, Mamo has had numerous injuries over the years that have limited his playing time. In five years of rugby, the full-back has notched up less than 50 appearances - an average of less than 10 games per season. And, it is worrying that Mamo has spent such a long time on the sidelines at the age of just 23 - which perhaps does not bode well for the future.

But Mamo is an incredibly gifted player and when he has been on the field, he has made a massive difference to the Huddersfield side. Castleford do not have a quota space available at present, yet an opportunity to strike for a quality full-back that is out of contract at the end of season does not come around often.