Former Doncaster Toll Bar junior Lewis Laing made his debut for Huddersfield Giants against Workington Town on Sunday – at the age of 16.
Laing, from Bessacarr, who started out in Toll Bar’s under-8s, is a member of the Super League side’s academy.
He featured as a second half substitute in the Giants’ 50-10 friendly defeat.
Craig Lawton, Laing’s under-16s coach at Toll Bar, said: “I can remember the first night Lewis came down to train with us as an eight-year-old lad. He was one of the smallest in the side but straight away it was clear to see he was made for rugby.
“Despite his small frame he thrived on the contact and physical side of rugby.
“As the years went on and he started to fill out he became a very dominant player on the field and natural leader for us.
“His skill level developed quickly as he was always keen to learn and always asking questions.
“As a captain for our side all the other players looked up to him with his consistently high performances, he was always going to be signed up by a professional club in my eyes.
“Everyone at the club is really proud of the progress he has made and for him to make his debut at 16 was brilliant for the club, himself and his family.
“From a coach’s point of view he’s been brilliant to coach, his attitude is second to none and I think this will take him far in the professional game.”