Consistent forward Oliver Holmes is the latest player to commit his future to Castleford Tigers after signing a two-year contract extension.
The 21-year-old back rower was in the last year of his current deal, but has agreed to stay at the Mend-A-Hose Jungle until at least the end of the 2016 season.
Despite his young age, Holmes is in his fifth year as a first teamer at Cas, having notched up 73 league appearances since making his debut aged 17 in a 24-0 defeat at Huddersfield Giants in April 2010.
Last year’s Young Player of the Year graduated through the Tigers’ Academy after joining the club from Normanton Knights. He has scored two tries in nine appearances for the Tigers so far in 2014.
Holmes said: “I’m happy with how I’m playing and that shows by being rewarded with the new contract.
“Daryl Powell has shown a bit of faith in me as I’ve started all but one of the games this year. There are still bits of my game that I’m looking to improve and that’s what I’ll be working on in training.
“It’s the first time I’ve been in the situation where I’m playing in the last year of my contract. There was a bit of pressure on because I knew that I had to play well otherwise the club might not renew my contract, but I was always confident that I could perform well and earn the new deal.
“I wanted to get some good games under my belt at the start of the season and try and get a new deal sorted, so it’s all good that it’s happened now.
“I’ve got to push on now; I’m going to be giving it 110% percent every week because that’s the player and person that I am and that’s what I should be doing week in, week out. We want to be winning games and putting in that type of effort is the way that’s going to happen.
“I’m in to my fifth year with the club. It’s a little bit odd because a couple of years ago there were a lot of players who came through the Academy and had to step up to the senior side quite early at 17 and 18-years-old because we didn’t have a big squad. We benefitted in that situation and I’d like to say that I’m quite experienced now.”
Tigers head coach Daryl Powell is pleased to see one of his young stars commit himself to the club.
He said: “I am delighted that an outstanding young player who has risen through the club’s development system has decided that his future lies with the Tigers.
“Oliver is a quality player and individual whose game is growing consistently and will continue to do so as he works so hard at his game.
“We saw his value to the team in a tough game versus St Helens last weekend and I’m looking forward to helping him develop his ability in the coming seasons.”
Oliver Holmes in sponsored throughout 2014 by McTigues Funeral Directors.