SCORING four tries on his season’s first-team debut in London capped a terrific milestone for Rhys Evans and his twin Ben.
A swollen knee for regular right winger Joel Monaghan gave the 21-year-old utility back the ‘special’ appearance he had been yearning for, alongside his brother who has been an ever present in the Wolves 17 this year.
“That’s the first time Ben and I have played together in the first team and our mum, who has just moved abroad, was really excited about it and listening in on the radio.
“I thought Ben played really well when he came off the bench. He’s improved massively and I think being on loan at Bradford last year playing Super League every week really helped him.
“He’s come back a better player and a better bloke.
“I’m happy how I performed at London and scoring four tries is nice, the first time I’ve done that since Academy days."
We asked Rhys to plead his case to Tony Smith for him to keep his spot against Salford on Friday, rather than last season’s top try scorer Monaghan getting the nod to return after recovering from a swollen knee sustained in the win against Hull.
He laughed and said: “I’ll train hard and hopefully get in the team again. If Joel’s coming back in then hopefully I can get in the side elsewhere, but if not I’ll support the boys as usual.”
With his four tries, Rhys became Wolves’ leading try scorer this season in one swoop.
“At the moment,” he said with a smile. “But Joel will overtake me, won’t he!”
Rhys feels Wolves have been a little rusty so far but has seen positive signs during his time on the sidelines, while also getting game time with partner club Swinton Lions in the Championship.
“Although we’ve been rusty in parts, I think we have played well in parts but it’s about putting an 80-minute game together which hopefully we can do against Salford because it will be a tough game.
“We’re working hard in training as we usually do and trying to do the best we can on game day.
“I think there’s been improvements each week.
“The second half against London was really good - to nil them - so we just need to turn that into an 80-minute performance.”
He is also feeling the benefit of having represented Wales in the World Cup during October and November, when he was handed the full-back role.
“Even though it was disappointing on the field with Wales, with not winning a game, just being in that environment and being in such a good tournament was massive for both me and Ben.”
This week’s milestone for the twins marks eight years since they and their mother Jane elected to move to Warrington from Bridgend in south Wales to pursue the professional rugby league dream.