Wakefield Trinity fans should be ecstatic over Super League replacement for Tom Johnstone

There is no doubt about it, Tom Johnstone is an incredible talent and he has wowed the Wakefield Trinity audiences for numerous years.

But, he has also had his injury problems and is currently out for the rest of the Super League season before linking up with the Catalans Dragons for 2023.

Though the rest of Super League will be looking at that departure from Belle Vue as almost catastrophic for Trinity, those Wakefield fans that watch their team week in, week out will know that they have a brilliantly adequate replacement.

That man is, of course, Lewis Murphy.

A raw talent with lightning pace and a toughness that belies his athletic build, Murphy has taken to Super League like a duck to water in 2022 despite a difficult start to life under the bright Sky Sports lights against Leeds Rhinos in the early rounds.

That night, the fleet-footed winger endured a nightmare under the high ball and was targeted in defence, but the rapid improvement since then has been a joy to behold.

His carries out of defence are workmanlike and he never shies away from a big tackle or a difficult run when his team are on the back foot.

But, it’s Murphy’s finishing abilities that have impressed those who watch him on a consistent basis.

That acrobatic, flying finish in the corner has been perfect over the years by the likes of Tommy Makinson and Johnstone himself, but Murphy has proved that he is more than capable of delivering a world-class dive and put down.

Against the Wigan Warriors yesterday, the 20-year-old produced a wonderful interception to kill the game off and ease Wakefield’s relegation fears, but it was his tough carries out of defence that would have pleased head coach Willie Poching more than anything.

A tough and uncompromising forward line was waiting for Murphy each time, but he continued taking big carries even after appearing to take a stinging hit.

That is the type of courage that will have been noticed by the Trinity coaching staff, and, with Murphy out of contract at the end of 2023, Poching and the board will definitely want to tie the winger down before any other clubs come sniffing.

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