Gigot ahead of Esacre for Catalans fullback spot

Catalans Dragons coach Laurent Frayssinous has revealed that Tony Gigot looks set to be the club’s starting full-back this season, ahead of Morgan Escare.

Escare has been hailed as one of the top young French players in recent seasons, but Frayssinous believes that Gigot can offer more in defence.

“Tony Gigot has been spending a lot of time at training at full-back and I think he did well against Huddersfield,” Frayssinous said.

“I’m not saying he’s better than Morgan but he’s doing a better job defending the way we want to play. Morgan will still have some game time at full-back.”

The Dragons lost 26-16 to Huddersfield Giants in a friendly at the John Smith’s Stadium on Sunday.

Despite the defeat, Frayssinous was pleased with the performace. He also outlined how his squad system will operate differently in 2016.

“Last year we had just 22 to 25 players, which was one of the mistakes we made,” he said.

“Now we train with at least 37 boys and young players like Thibault Margalet, Hugo Perez and Stan Robin will stay with us instead of the reserve grade.

“We’ll not make the same errors we made in past. This season we not only have quality but also quantity in our squad.

“I used to give the numbers according to the players’ wishes and habits but, with the large number of new faces in the squad, I decided to change this system.

“Squad numbers this season give an idea of our starting 17, although the players will be chosen by their performances and fitness.”

The Catalans have subsequently confirmed that Gigot will wear the number one jersey, while Escare has been handed the number 21.

CATALANS SQUAD NUMBERS 2016

1 Tony Gigot
2 Jodie Broughton
3 Krisnan Inu
4 Vincent Duport
5 Pat Richards
6 Todd Carney
7 Richie Myler
8 Louis Anderson
9 Paul Aiton
10 Remi Casty
11 Glenn Stewart
12 Justin Horo
13 Jason Baitieri
14 Dave Taylor
15 Julian Bousquet
16 Eloi Pelissier
17 Greg Mounis
18 Thomas Bosc
19 Olivier Elima
20 Fouad Yaha
21 Morgan Escare
22 Antoni Maria
23 Stan Robin
24 Thibaut Margalet
25 Ugo Perez
26 Jordan Sigismeau

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