Kaide Ellis: The Rise of Wigan Warriors’ Iconic Number 13

Kaide Ellis Embraces Wigan’s Iconic Number 13 Jersey

Aussie Star Opens Up on Pressure and Transition to Loose Forward Role

Kaide Ellis, the Australian star who joined Wigan Warriors in 2022, has opened up about the pressure that comes with wearing the club’s iconic number 13 jersey. The talented forward, who featured 27 times in the NRL for Penrith Panthers and St George Illawarra Dragons, has seamlessly transitioned into the loose forward position this season, a role that has allowed him to take his game to new heights.

Originally handed the number 15 shirt, Ellis has since made 62 appearances for the Warriors, winning the domestic treble and the World Club Challenge. His 63rd game will come on Saturday afternoon at Wembley, as Wigan face off against Warrington Wolves in the Challenge Cup final.

“I thought it might go to someone locally, like a local junior, and maybe I’d still play that role. To get both (the shirt and the role), it was very special, and I knew what it meant before I got it. Getting it, I just want to do the jersey proud.”

The switch to the loose forward position has been a significant development in Ellis’ career. Prior to this season, 21 of his 62 appearances had come off the bench, but he has now firmly established himself as a starter, missing just two games so far.

“The role is something I’ve grown into. I’ve always been alright with the ball, but playing that middle link role week in, week out is something that I’ve really enjoyed and I feel it’s somewhere I can really take my performances to the next level.”

As he prepares for his first appearance at the iconic Wembley Stadium, Ellis is confident that he can continue to develop his game, drawing on the guidance of Wigan legend Sean O’Loughlin, who wore the number 13 jersey for over 20 years.

“I’m still learning, I’ve got a lot of good people around me on the field, and then I’ve got Lockers (O’Loughlin) who wore that jersey for 20-odd years. I just want to take my game to the next level.”

🔗 Source