PLAYING at KP Championship level for the first time, Castleford Tigers youngster Kieran Gill couldn’t have wished for a better start to life on loan with Oldham.
Two games, two wins and a try in each from the left-centre position add up to the sort of bright beginning the 20-year-old Cas lad could only have dreamed about when his Super League employers allowed him to cross the Pennines to learn his trade and gain experience at Championship level.
Too old for under-19s rugby, and on a full-time contract that runs to the end of next season, Gill’s first experience of playing against men was in League One with Oxford.
A step-up in status to the Championship was a natural progression for a youngster who is held in high regard by Tigers.
He responded by scoring a textbook centre’s try, on debut, in the Roughyeds’ 26-18 win against Whitehaven and followed up with another in the 24-16 win at Sheffield five days later.
Looking ahead to Oldham’s bid to make it three wins in a row against derby rivals Swinton Lions at Bower Fold on Sunday (3pm), Gill said: “There are some great vibes around the dressing room and I’m really happy to be here.
“I’ve settled in well and it’s always nice to score tries and to be on the winning side.”
Having done the business at Sheffield on Friday night, the players were given the weekend off but they report back tonight to begin preparations for another key battle in the fight to retain their Championship status.
Post-game reports from the dressing room at Sheffield indicated there were no injury concerns, just usual bumps and bruises.
There was only one dual-reg man in the side — prop Tyler Dickinson — but the situation this week relating to the use of Huddersfield Giants youngsters won’t be known until later.
Hooker Lewis Foster’s initial one-month loan is up, but Roughyeds are thought to be seeking an extension in talks with his full-time employers, Leigh Centurions.
Swinton, who have beaten Oldham twice already this season, suffered a 62-12 hammering at home by Halifax on Sunday.
They have three points more than Oldham and sit three places higher in the table, but they have the worst defensive record in the entire division, having conceded 691 points — 113 more than Roughyeds.