HE does not even turn 21 until April, but Jayden Myers is one of the first names on the Bulls team sheet at present.

With Ben Blackmore absent due to an ankle injury, it was the young centre who was given the nod to start out wide in Bradford's 48-2 Challenge Cup third round win over North Wales Crusaders on Sunday, despite that not being his favoured position.

That decision by Bulls head coach Eamon O'Carroll was made despite former Hull KR and York winger Will Oakes being available, but the Scottish international was only named as 18th man.

That was partly down to Oakes' fitness, the 24-year-old having not played a competitive game for several months due to injury, but also due to O'Carroll's faith in Myers.

The head coach told the T&A after Sunday's win that he did not feel Myers deserved to lose his spot in the team, even with Joe Arundel coming in to partner Kieran Gill in the centres.

And Myers was happy to hear that, telling us post-match: “It was good to be out there.

“I was told yesterday I’d be playing on the wing and obviously while I enjoy being at centre, I’m just happy to be out on the pitch getting game time.”

Discussing the adaptation needed between those two positions, Myers said: “It’s the pendulum really.

“It’s really good how well Eamon talks to me about it, and knowing when I have to drop back, but there’s not much of a difference.

“Defensively, you don’t tackle as much on the wing, but coming in for carries, you’re still having to work hard.”

Myers showed his worth at centre last year, notably in the tense 12-10 win at eventually-promoted London Broncos in September, scoring both of Bulls’ tries that day to seal their spot in the play-offs.

But Arundel and Gill are a potent combination in there, so the fact that Myers feels comfortable on the wing can surely only help him, especially if Blackmore is out injured for a while.

The Bulls academy product said: “As long as I’m on the pitch, it’s a big confidence boost for me, because there are a lot of good players out there alongside me.

“If I’m not making it into the centres, but Eamon rates me enough to go out on the wing, then I’m happy with that.”

Arundel was on the inside of Myers down the right on Sunday, and with him being nearly 12 years older than the makeshift winger, the latter is glad of the former Halifax star’s advice.

Myers said: “It’s awesome to have that, and people don’t actually hear or see the little things he does to help me.

Bradford Telegraph and Argus: Joe Arundel, pictured being congratulating on scoring against North Wales, is a huge help to Jayden Myers whenever the two play alongside each other. Joe Arundel, pictured being congratulating on scoring against North Wales, is a huge help to Jayden Myers whenever the two play alongside each other. (Image: Tom Pearson.)

“You can defend confidently when people like Joey are inside you, the same goes for me having Chezzy (Chester Butler) and Gasky (Lee Gaskell) there.

“They all talk really well and they’ve all got enough years of experience on me for me to lean on them.”

As for the win itself on Sunday, which came after a slow-starting Bulls found themselves 2-0 down midway through the first half, Myers said: “I think we maybe underestimated North Wales a bit.

“They came out with nothing to lose and played well, they’re a good outfit.

“We turned it on in the second half, but we weren’t competitive enough or completing enough before the break and there were lot of sloppy errors.

“It was a bit of a stop-start game and while it was obviously good to get the win, there’s a lot of stuff we can still work on.”