PA Sport

Wane hails debutant Tierney

Wane hails debutant Tierney
By PA Sport

08/06/2013 at 07:45Updated 08/06/2013 at 08:14

Wigan coach Shaun Wane hailed Lewis Tierney as a "real talent" after the 18-year-old son of Jason Robinson made a try-scoring debut for the Super League leaders.

Tierney, filling in for full-back Sam Tomkins in an injury-ravaged side, crossed in the first half as Wigan claimed a thrilling 33-32 win at Widnes. Tierney's effort helped Wigan into a 16-4 lead at the Select Security Stadium but Widnes hit back to go ahead and it needed a late Sam Powell drop goal and Scott Taylor try to win it.

Even then, Patrick Ah Van set up a tense finish by completing a hat-trick to bring the Vikings back within a point with just over a minute remaining. Wane said of Tierney: "He is a good player and the only way I am going to find out is putting him in games like that. He will play again this year. He is a real talent."

Tierney was one of several Academy products in a Wigan side shorn of nine first-teamers. Ryan Hampshire was another 18-year-old to make his debut while 20-year-old half-back Sam Powell showed great maturity by landing his one-pointer and then setting up Taylor's clincher.

Wane said: "I'm pleased with the win. I wasn't that pleased with the performance - I thought we could play better but to get two points with that team, I'm pleased for the young kids.

"I knew that team had a chance of winning the game. I'm pleased with the two points, we put a lot of effort in. I have given quite a few debuts this year and I always play a lot of youngsters.

"I'm fuming about a few things I saw - poor decisions by the referee - but I am not going to let that affect the win. It was a great two points with the team we had out. We showed the quality and the depth in our club."

Widnes coach Denis Betts, a former Wigan team-mate of Robinson's, believes his team are continuing to make big strides.

He said: "We didn't lose it from the drop goal. We lost it from their tryline with a couple of missed tackles. The first try was a soft try and we made errors. We were against a well-drilled highly-talented side. We worked hard enough to get something out of that game and the lads are really hurting.

"We are in the margins at the moment, just the wrong side of them. You saw a very tight squad and some lads in my team maturing and starting to get what it is about."