Preview: Navarette in line to make Stags debut against Oxford

Hemel Stags club crest
Hemel Stags club crest

Hemel Stags look set to give a debut to prop forward Romain Navarette against Oxford tomorrow afternoon after he joined the club from Limoux.

The 19-year-old will be with the Stags for the rest of the season and coach Troy Perkins is expected to name him against Oxford in Sunday’s Kingstone Press Championship One fixture.

Perkins said: “He played a fair bit of first grade for Limoux this year, he’s aggressive, carries the ball well and wants to improve his rugby league.”

But Perkins has plenty of injury headaches after Ben Young (foot) was ruled out, leaving the Stags without three players who can play in the half-backs.

Perkins said: “It’s a big blow, but we’ve had to deal with injuries for a few weeks now and we’ll just keep going.”

On Oxford, he added: “I watched them against South Wales and they do the little things right. They’ve won three of their last four and they’re flying high, so they’re going to be a tough team to beat.

“They sit just below us in the table and whoever wins will cement fourth spot. It’s a pretty important game.”

Oxford coach Tony Benson is aiming for a fourth win in five league fixtures, with prop Matty Hadden looking to back up a superb effort against South Wales Scorpions by challenging Hemel’s pack on Sunday.