Fax sign France prop ahead of Batley showdown

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Halifax have signed the France international prop Clement Boyer on a short term deal until the end of the season.

The Toulouse front rower - who is contracted to the French side for 2016 - is due to fly into England on Friday night, too late to figure in Sunday’s Championship fixture against Batley at the Shay (3.0).

But with Luke Ambler sidelined through injury, and youngster Tyler Dickinson returning to Huddersfield after a two-month loan stay, the 20 year old will bolster coach Richard Marshall’s options for both the league run in and the Super Eights that follow it.

The Toulouse coach Sylvain Houles is a friend; I played with him at London and he came to Warrington last summer and looked at the way we did things there,” said Marshall, who also confirmed the former Wigan centre or stand off Chris Taylor, who has been on loan at Whitehaven, has been released to join the Cumbrians permanently.

“We’ve talked about players a few times and he recommended Clement to me, so he’s coming in until the end of the season.

“He’s played for France, he’s played in a Grand Final and he’s a tough, uncompromising kind of prop, which is what I look for.

“He’s going to have to earn the right to play in the team, and he’s coming into a different culture and a different language, so it’s a challenge for him.

“But he’s a front rower, he just needs to run hard and tackle harder; I’ll have to try and put that into French.

“Tyler’s been great for us but he’s not managed to get in the side the last couple of weeks and he needs to play, so he’s gone back to Huddersfield.

“He’s been a really popular member of the group and I think he’s enjoyed playing for his hometown club.”

Marshall’s side host the Bulldogs looking to maintain a top four push that now has real momentum, with the prospect of a place in the so-called ‘middle eight’ alongside the bottom four Super League clubs an increasingly tantalising prospect.

“The important thing is that we cannot drop our standards,” said Marshall, who watched his side demolish Sheffield 38-10 last weekend.

“Batley are coming with nothing to lose and John Kear will have them fired up to ruffle a few feathers.

“They’ve got some extremely good players, people like Johnny Campbell, James Brown and Keegan Hirst, and they’ll make it tough.

“Can complacency set in for us? Of course it can.

“But we’re doing what we can to manage that within the squad and the good thing is that the players are picking each other up if they see those standards dropping.

“We’re on a level now - everyone knows what their role is in the team and what’s expected of them - but we’re not that good yet.

“Look at the try Mitchell Stringer scored against us for Sheffield; that was disgraceful, because we’d looked at that play during the week.

“We need to continue trying to get better.”

Fax appear likely to be without winger Gareth Potts this weekend after he was knocked out against Sheffield, with youngster Jake Eccleston the favourite to deputise.

Another winger who won’t be playing - for either side - is Fax’s Alex Brown, who is on loan at the Bulldogs.

“Alex won’t be playing, and I don’t think Potts will either,” said Marshall.

“We might end up having a bit of a reshuffle in the backline.”