Paul Wellens makes admission on Tee Ritson as he explains difficulty St Helens man has had in pre-season and Super League 2024

ST HELENS head coach Paul Wellens has hinted that Tee Ritson has got the ‘spring back in his step’ after a difficult pre-season and early start to the 2024 Super League season.

Ritson has yet to play for Saints in 2024 after making 16 appearances for the Merseyside club in 2023.

However, the Thai international enjoyed a stellar performance at the weekend on dual-registration for the Swinton Lions, with Wellens revealing that the ex-Barrow Raider is in contention to make his first appearance for Saints in 2024 against Huddersfield Giants.

“He is in the 21-man squad because he is in genuine contention. I watched his game against Swinton, he put a marker down and really impressed,” Wellens said.

“He looked like a Super League player playing at that level and that’s what we want from our players when they go on dual-registration.

“When he first came through the doors 18 months ago, he had a real spring in his step but throughout pre-season he struggled and didn’t quite have that spring in his step and that’s normal because he hasn’t been in full-time rugby league before and that comes with its challenges.

“But, what I have sensed around him the past month, he has got a spring in his step and his standards at training have been really high.”

Could Ritson have gone out on loan or potentially go out on loan to a rival Super League side for more game time?

“Potentially, it was a difficult one as it falls into the category of Sam Royle as they are often in our 21-man squad and are only an injury or suspension away from playing.

“But I believe Super League is their level and I believe they should be playing at their level. It’s not something I would discount if there was a prolonged period in which they weren’t playing but Tee is close to playing.”

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