Wakefield Trinity Wildcats coach Chris Chester has called on his young debutants to try and enjoy their first taste of senior action tonight: despite it being in such daunting circumstances.
Chester confirmed on Thursday that both Judah Mazive and Frazer Morris will make their Trinity debuts against Wigan at the DW Stadium tonight as the club’s injury woes deepen following their Challenge Cup semi-final exit to Warrington last weekend.
Mazive will start on the wing – potentially facing off against England international Josh Charnley – and Morris will come on from the bench, with another youngster, Liam Senior, named as 18th man.
And Chester wants his young Trinity stars to thrive in the big-game atmosphere, not freeze.
“Three out of the four young lads will play, Liam Senior will miss out as we’re fortunate we’ve got Joe Arundel and Reece Lyne in his position,” Chester said, confirming Jordan Crowther will also feature.
“Judah will start on the wing and we’ll have young Frazer on the bench so it’s a great opportunity for them both. Judah got picked for England Academy and went over but unfortunately had to come home because of a family bereavement: but he’s in good spirits and he deserves this opportunity.
“I could have picked them an easier game to come into but that’s the situation we’re in. It’s one they need to enjoy; it’s a great opportunity and they’re coming up against the best players in the comp. Friday will be a big test for us all and it’s going to be a real test of our attitude and togetherness.”
Chester also said that he has identified a goal for Trinity in the Super 8s despite being seemingly cut adrift in the race for the top four.
“For us in the Super 8s, we want to finish in the six,” he said.
“We think sixth is really achievable. Fifth may be at a push but you’ve got to win six out of seven and rely on others. Us, Widnes and Cas are probably fighting for three spots and it’d be a great achievement to get in that top six.
“There’s a few guys who’ve got bonuses if they finish sixth too so they’ll be working hard to ensure that happens!”