AS wingman Tommy Makinson joins the list of Saints internationals on the sidelines, coach Paul Wellens today gave some more positive news on a pair of his casualties.

Makinson will miss the next four-to-six weeks with a Plantar Fascia issue, but Wellens expects skipper Jonny Lomax and vice captain Morgan Knowles to be in the running to return the week after the international break at the end of June.

If all goes well, that could mean a return for the home game against Castleford on 5 July.

Lomax is recovering from a broken hand sustained in the Leeds game, whilst Knowles is in rehab after groin surgery.

Wellens said: “We are still hoping that Jonny will be back the week after the England break – and hopefully Morgan Knowles as well.

“We continue to work with physios at the moment and hopefully they start to reintegrate back into the squad post next week, and it will be great to get them back doing that.

“Obviously they have still got a few boxes to tick and a few hurdles to overcome before they are back in full squad training, but hopefully they will be back sooner rather than later.”

It was a case of so far, so good on Knowles’ surgery, but now it is a case of getting him back moving and running.

“With things like that you just have to keep taking one day at a time – but with both Jonny and Morgan there are no secrets how important and influential both players are within our team.

“It will be great to get them back when they are there but in the meantime we continue on with the players that have come in and done a really good job,” Wellens said.

The head coach last week revealed that Joe Batchelor had ankle surgery and was due to be sidelined for 8-9 weeks (from last week).

Today he explained the other long-term casualties are still on course following their respective surgeries.

Wellens re-iterated Alex was still on the same time frame of 16 weeks from having surgery done (at end of April), Matty Whitley is still a 12 week return to play from when he had his surgery done (in mid May).

Jake Wingfield was similar with his recovery which was deemed 16 weeks from the time of his shoulder surgery in mid-May.

Wellens said: “They are all working hard in rehab.

“It is tough for those guys at the moment and they would much rather be out there playing with their teammates at the weekend.

“But that is the nature of the game and they have just got to continue to work hard and hopefully come back fit and firing for the back end of the season.”