Hull's Mikey Lewis pays tribute to family after try on England debut against Tonga

  • Video report by Chris Dawkes

A rugby league player who was seen holding back tears in a post-match interview after scoring a try on his England debut has said it was the sight of his family in the stands which made him emotional.

Hull KR half-back Mikey Lewis struggled to contain his emotions as he was interviewed on live television after scoring against Tonga in a 22-18 win at St Helens on Sunday, 22 October.

The 22-year-old told the BBC: "This is how much it means to me."

Explaining his reaction to ITV News, he said: "I didn't really want to get emotional but when I was doing the interview I could see my family in the stands watching me do it. Looking at them before the interview got me emotional before I even started and I let it all out."

Lewis has made 58 appearances for Hull KR. Credit: PA

A rising star of the game, Lewis made his Super League debut in 2019 and has played 58 times for Hull KR, scoring 29 tries.

But he is no stranger to adversity. The Hull-born player struggled before joining Hull KR. Rejected by amateur side West Hull, he even considered giving up the sport.

"I've been having a real think about what is my reason why - why am I doing this job?" he said.

"I'm living the dream and they're part of this dream with me - my family - it's not just me on my own to get me here. It's all them who've got me there and I want to repay them for all their hard work, all their money, because we're not the richest. I can't say how proud I am of them for sticking with me in the really dark times and the really good times, like on Sunday."

He said: "I'm still learning on the go and I will be for many years. I feel especially this year I've become a man instead of a boy."

Want a quick and expert briefing on the biggest news stories? Listen to our latest podcasts to find out What You Need To Know.