Rising star Sheils puts pen to paper for 2023
Sheffield Eagles are delighted to confirm the re-signing of youngster Ben Sheils on a one-year deal.
The winger signed for the club after he departed Super League side Leeds Rhinos and made his debut for the Eagles in a 34-24 win over Dewsbury Rams.
Despite a singular appearance in the Eagles first team in 2022, Sheils is pleased to be continuing his journey with Sheffield into a second season.
“I’m excited,” said the outside-back, shortly after signing fresh terms with the South Yorkshire club.
“I’d obviously like to get a bit more game time next season, but it’ll be great to be around the guys that have re-signed as well as the new lads.
“Reflecting on his professional debut in round 27, the youngster said: “It was special,”
“To make my debut in front of the home crowd, and to play with that group of lads was great, I really enjoyed the experience.
The winger was surprised by the coaching team before the game, who brought the youngster’s parents into the changing room as part of the pre-match shirt presentation.
“It was special to have my mum and dad there. I wasn’t sure they’d be able to come, it was a nice surprise.”
The rising star has looked to learn from fellow wide-man Ben Jones-Bishop, the Jamaican international who touched down 23 tries this season.
“It’s been great to have experienced lads around me. Ben’s helped me a lot this year,” Sheils added.
“He’s been there for me, he’s answered any questions that I’ve asked, it’s been great to learn from such a good player.”
Looking ahead to 2023, he has a few improvements in mind: “I still need to put some weight on and develop my skills throughout next year.
“To get more game time would be great, either at the Eagles or to go out on loan and get more experience then come back and show everyone what I'm made of.”
On the new one-year deal for Sheils, Eagles Director of Rugby Mark Aston said: “Ben is an up-and-coming talent and one who has certainly had to be patient this year,”
“He is a credit to himself, his family and it typifies upbringing he’s had within the game.
“The way he has gone about his business this year, coming to every training session and giving his all, has been exemplary.
“I was delighted to get him out on the pitch against Dewsbury and he didn’t disappoint.
“We have someone here who is willing to learn and that can only be a good thing for a youngster coming through the ranks.
“It’s all about progression for Ben in 2023. We’ve seen it with Blake Broadbent and Ryan Johnson in recent seasons. They’re now established first team players and that’s where we want Ben to be soon.”
By Lewis Coleman, graphic by Alex Coleman