Doncaster Knights’ hopes of becoming only the second side to beat promoted Coventry at home this season could be boosted by the return of USA international second-rower Nick Civetta.
Civetta had surgery following the Eagles Autumn internationals.
But he got the all clear to resume playing again on Tuesday and is likely to come into contention for Saturday’s trip to the Butts Park Arena where Knights lost 31-29 in a high-scoring Championship Cup Pool 1 defeat last month.
“It will be great to have Nick back, in a position where we’ve struggled with injuries for most of the season, because he’s someone who can run the lineout,” said head coach Glen Kenworthy.
Civetta’s return to fitness will help compensate for the continued absence of fellow second-rower Morgan Eames, who is likely to be out for at least another month due to the neck injury he picked up late last year.
“It’s a blow because Morgan has been playing really well this year,” said Kenworthy.
Full-back/wing Paul Jarvis, injured in the last game against Yorkshire Carnegie, also faces several weeks on the sidelines.
Fly-half Kurt Morath, who also came off during the same game, is likely to face a late fitness test with recent loan signing Sam Olver set to step in if the Tongan international – who is the club’s top points scorer this season - is ruled out.
“I’d have no worries with Sam starting if Kurt doesn’t play,” said Kenworthy.
“He’s a good player and he’s been here long enough to know what we are about and the fact that Ealing play a similar game has helped him settle in quickly.”
Several other backs could face late fitness tests but Kenworthy said he was confident they would all be available for selection.