Wigan youngster chomping at the bit

He might not have played any matches, but young Wigan prop Ben Kilner believes his time at Super League rivals Toronto will boost his chances of a first-team debut for the Warriors.
Kilner, a member of Darrell Goulding’s Wigan Reserves squad, was loaned to the injury-hit Super League top-flight newcomers along with his team-mate Jack Wells for a month on February 26.
While second rower Wells played in Toronto’s defeats by St Helens and Leeds, Kilner was unable to force his way into Brian McDermott’s side against Saints and missed the Rhinos clash because of a shoulder injury.
But the 20-year-old, who played six matches for Rochdale and four for Dewsbury in the Championship last year, reckons his time with the Wolfpack provided him with a valuable experience.
“When we got there, the first person we saw when we walked in was Sonny Bill Williams,” said former Oulton Raiders junior Kilner, who came through the Wigan Academy system and had a loan spell at Leigh in 2018.
“He came over and gave us a hug and was really welcoming. It was surreal, because he’s been number one all my life.
“We did a month with them, and it was really good experience. The (training) sessions weren’t as intense as they are at Wigan, but I really enjoyed them.”
Kilner, talking to the Wigan Today, added: “I know I’m close to getting my chance (at Wigan). I probably should have had it by now, but things just keep cropping up.
“I was hoping to make my debut last year against Catalans, but got injured. Then I went to Toronto, but needed an injection in my shoulder, so had to withdraw from the Leeds game.
“There was talk of extending the loan, and I thought I’d finally get my chance, but then this (the coronavirus lockdown) happened.”