A NEW deal sees a Scottish international join Whitehaven RLFC on a permanent basis and there’s “light at the end of the tunnel” for a few familiar faces who have been sidelined due to injury.

Haven has tied Oscar Thomas down for the rest of the season, the versatile Scottish international was previously on a one month trial spell with the club.

Thomas made his debut in the second half of the Betfred Challenge Cup second round defeat versus Widnes Vikings.

Despite only playing 40 minutes against the Vikings, he impressed Whitehaven RL coaching staff enough to secure the deal for the remainder of the 2021 campaign.

After signing the deal, Thomas said: “It’s been a long year of uncertainties since I last played, and so I’m excited to be back out playing the game I love and I’m grateful for Whitehaven for giving me this opportunity.”

Whitehaven RLFC director and member of the football committee Ashley Kilpatrick said: “It’s great to have Oscar back with us after his trial period after only seeing him for those 40 minutes against Widnes in what was his first hit-out in 14 months.”

Kilpatrick said: “The coaching staff felt as though we could do with some cover around the backs and with the versatility that Oscar brings, it was an easy decision to bring him back to the club for the remainder of the season.”

Kilpatrick said: “He’s played in this division to a good standard for most of his career and being a world cup year, he will be wanting to show his best rugby to secure a place in the Scottish squad so hopefully we can see the best of Oscar for the rest of 2021.” Head coach Gary Charlton said that Dion Aiye, who has been wearing a knee brace is “on the mend” and set to return in two to three weeks' time.

“Hopefully we’ll see Dion soon” he said.

He added that Greg McNally and Ryan King, who have also been sidelined of late will soon return to action.

“The only one who isn’t is Marc Shackley” he said.

Whitehaven’s skipper has been out of action due to knee troubles and could undergo surgery on the cartilage. An interim captain has been leading the squad from the front in the meantime.

Charlton said: “Karl Dixon’s been doing it for the past few weeks I’m really pleased with the way Karl’s gone about it.

“There’s light at the end of the tunnel for a couple of players.”

He said that King and Dion will likely be back up to speed with a few training sessions in the books.

Speaking of signing Thomas to a full contact, he said: “We believe he’s a really good player. He’s shown in training that he’s got flashes of something.”

Thomas will be straight into contention and available for selection in this weekend’s clash with Toulouse Olympique at the LEL Arena in Whitehaven.

The match will be streamed live on OuRLeague.