SAINTS coach Kristian Woolf will send some of his fringe teammates on loan this year to give them the much-needed playing time.
But he’ll need them on board when a whole-team effort is needed starting in June, when the tight deadlines and back-to-back games will be dense and fast.
The RFL this week announced the minimum loan period of 28 to 14 days, meaning there are fewer concerns about players being unavailable in the event of injury.
Woolf has explained how difficult it has been to balance his team – and what he plans to do about it.
He said: “It’s tough for the young players right now because we don’t have any reserves or where to put them to have playing time every week, so it’s a real challenge.
“We only have a team of 30 players, but what we will look at at some point is a few players on loan to go and play football elsewhere for short periods and come back to us with football under their belt.
“It also helps keep the players happy because they want to train and then put that into practice.”
Woolf looked at the 25-game Super League schedule, along with the Challenge Cup and Exiles game requirements as well.
“It’s a real challenge right now and I have looked through the schedule before – once we get to June there are real challenges there in terms of tight turnaround times.
“We have to put 17 on the field every round, but make sure the 17 is fresh and ready to play and win games.
“It’s going to take some rotation to be successful in this competition. It will be a real team affair – we are not going to rely on 17-19 players, we will need a full team of 30 to contribute and they are all going to have match opportunities.
“They are all going to have opportunities where they will be responsible for winning,” he said.