LEWIS Tierney feels he is better prepared to make his mark on Super League than last season as he prepares to make his first appearance of the year in tonight’s clash with Hull FC.
The 19-year-old figured three times for Shaun Wane’s outfit in 2013 but has spent most of this campaign on dual-registration for Workington.
His spell with the Championship outfit included a dazzling two-try display in a 16-12 win at Keighley last weekend, which earned him the Championship Player of the Week award and convinced Wane he is ready for another crack.
And Tierney – son of Wigan great Jason Robinson – reckons his spell playing for the Cumbrian outfit has helped him develop.
He said: “It’s helped me massively being there, going from playing against players my own age to playing against men is a big step up.
“There are all bigger than the 19s lads I was playing against last year, and it’s helped me physically to develop a bit more.”
Tierney has earned his chance after Matty Bowen suffered a shoulder injury in last weekend’s 37-16 win at Catalan. Fellow No.1 Ryan Hampshire is also sidelined.
The two academy-products have been learning from Bowen, and will have at least another year under his wing after the former Kangaroos international agreed an extension to his contract for 2015. Though the news may appear to limit his opportunities, Tierney could not be happier.
“He’s helped me a lot, Mango has been a big influence on me,” he said.
“He’s one of the greatest fullbacks to ever play in the NRL, and it’s a privilege more than anything just being in the squad with him.
“It’s a bit strange, playing and training alongside someone you’ve watched as a kid. I used to watch him on TV all the time.
“I’m definitely glad he’s staying.”
Hull FC are struggling in 11th position and need a victory to keep alive their faint hopes of reaching the play-offs. Kick-off at the DW is 8pm.