Oliver Russell has signed a two-year contract with Huddersfield Giants, much to the delight of head coach Simon Woolford.
The 19-year-old who has made four Betfred Super League appearances this season is now committed at the John Smith’s until the end of the 2020 season.
With the Giants on the verge of securing Super 8s qualification it’s great news for supporters and staff alike.
“He’s got a great kicking game, plays with lots of poise and is very calm,” said Woolford, whose in-form side go to Castleford on Friday night.
“Nothing seems to faze him, which is what you want in a young half, and that’s a real strength of his at such a young age.
“After another pre-season or two, getting his body ready for week to week Super League, I would expect him to continue to improve.
“We’re stoked he’s committed to the club, he’s shown enough in the four games that he’s played this season that he can develop into a great player for us.
“Over the next couple of years we will work hard and prepare Olly for the week to week rigours of Super League.”
Russell has kicked eight goals so far, in addition to a vital drop goal against Leeds Rhinos.
He joins academy stars Sam Hewitt , Jon Luke Kirby and twins Innes and Louis Senior in signing contracts with the first team.
Russell explained: “I’ve come over from Wigan, worked hard and getting the contract is a great reward, so I’m looking forward to the future with the Giants.
“I’m looking forward to working with Simon for the next couple of years but also getting tips off players around me like Danny Brough, so that I can be the best I possibly can be.
“Chris Thorman and Luke Robinson both played half-back at a high level so to also have them teaching me is really beneficial.
“I didn’t expect to have made my Super League debut already.
“If you had told me at the start of the year that I was going to play just one Super League match I would have bitten your hand off, but to be a part of four, with three wins, is great.
“I’ve loved the season and I can’t wait to get back into the mix.
“It’s even better when I’ve got players of my age coming up to the first team with me in Sam Hewitt and Jon Luke Kirby.
“There’ll be even more to come because the work that Andy Kelly and Luke Robinson do with the Academy is outstanding.”