5th February 2019, 14:55
Esslemont "over the moon" with Eagles debut
Sonny Esslemont was “over the moon” to be involved in the Eagles’ 64-10 win over Swinton Lions last Sunday.
The new signing from Hemel Stags didn’t expect to be in the 19-man squad but after a strong pre-season, Mark Aston gave the former Hull KR junior a shot.
He grabbed the opportunity with both hands, providing a big impact from the bench as Sheffield cruised to an opening day triumph.
“I was over the moon to be in the 19-man squad to start with,” he said.
“I’ve been training hard all throughout pre-season but I didn’t expect to be in there.
“I know Mark (Aston) is the type of coach that if you’re training hard, he will give you a go and I’m glad he had the faith to give me a bit of game time.
“I can only take each game as it comes and if I keep doing the little one-percenters then fingers crossed I’ll be a regular in the team.”
Esslemont highlighted the influence of front-row duo Matt James and Brad Knowles as a key part to his preparation for the new season.
“The likes of Matt James and Brad Knowles up front have been massive over pre-season for the new lads,” he added.
“I know Brad is new himself but with his experience at Featherstone, he’s been trying to push us.
“I know Faz (Joel Farrell), I’ve played with him and against him, and everyone has been very welcoming and it’s starting to show.
“We are quite a close bunch, we have been over pre-season, and the result on Sunday showed how far we have come in such a short period of time.
“Hopefully we can now kick on, starting with Barrow away which is going to be a tough ask.”
By Dan Fowler, photo by Alex Coleman