NEW recruit Lua Lokotui will start training at Gloucester this week and will be in contention for Saturday's LV=Cup clash at Northampton.
The 33-year-old Tongan lock has timed his Kingsholm arrival perfectly, with Will James sustaining a rib problem in Saturday's 36-16 Mont de Marsan victory.
Wing Shane Monahan had to act as a makeshift flanker after James' injury on Saturday, with every other replacement already on the field.
With James now an injury doubt and Jim Hamilton's Six Nations absence around the corner, Gloucester boss Nigel Davies admitted Lokotui's arrival could not come soon enough.
Lokotui signed an 18-month deal to join Gloucester on December 12, moving from Wellington Lions, to offset Alex Brown's injury-enforced premature retirement.
Visa processing delayed the former Stade Francais' second-row's arrival, but now he is ready for action.
Davies said: "It's good timing on Lua, it's great to get him here and we'll get working on that.
"Will James has a sore rib and that was causing him some problems.
"It shouldn't be anything too serious, and with Lua arriving that should help out with the LV=games coming up.
"It's an opportunity to give him some rugby and get him settled in."