EXTENDED SHAY STAY FOR GARETH

ON-LOAN scrum-half Gareth Stephens is staying at the Shay - at least until the end of the season.

ON-LOAN scrum-half Gareth Stephens is staying at the Shay - at least until the end of the season.The 25-year-old Huddersfield-Sheffield player, the son of former Thrum Hall star Gary Stephens, linked up with the Sox before Christmas on a two month trial.

And he will now stay with Halifax for the duration of the Super League campaign - providing cover for star Aussie Andrew Dunemann and hooker Paul Rowley.

Stephens impressed in the pre-season clashes with the McAlpine outfit and St Helens, playing as an emergency hooker on both occasions.

He then turned in a muted performance against Hull at the Boulevard in his favoured number seven shirt and has not figured in Gary Mercer s first choice 17 since.

But with the Sox squad already under pressure with injury problems he could yet have a vital role to play later in the season.

l Oxford claimed their first win in the rugby league Varsity Match since 1992 by holding off Cambridge 35-17 in a thriller at Richmond last night.

l EX-Halifax forward Richard Marshall could be out of action for up to eight weeks after breaking his thumb.

Marshall, who joined Huddersfield-Sheffield over the winter in exchange for Martin Pearson, suffered the injury in Sunday s 18-10 loss to Salford City Reds.