UP-AND-COMING Dragons tighthead Luke Yendle has joined Jersey Reds on loan.

The 21-year-old has moved to the Channel Islands on a short-term deal ahead of their English Championship opener against London Scottish on Saturday.

Yendle made his Dragons debut last season when he received a late call-up to be on the bench against Wasps in the Champions Cup due to a coronavirus outbreak.

Other than that, his experiences have been in Celtic Cup rugby before the pandemic and the prop's game time would have been limited in the coming weeks and months.

The young front rower is behind Wales tighthead Leon Brown, Fiji international Mesake Doge, Chris Coleman and versatile veteran Aaron Jarvis in the pecking order, while Lloyd Fairbrother is targeting a return in 2022 from a ruptured Achilles.

It was announced on Wednesday that James Benjamin was heading to England’s second tier with Cornish Pirates to develop his tight game after moving from the back row to hooker and Yendle has followed him to gain experience.

“This is an opportunity for Luke to go on loan in the English Championship as part of his development and gain some valuable game time,” said Dragons director of rugby Dean Ryan.

Opportunity knocks for Yendle because of injuries to Jersey tightheads Jack Higgins and Adam Nicoll, leading to the young Dragon and 31-year-old Scottish prop Steven Longwell being drafted in.

Reds director of Rugby Harvey Biljon said: “Steven and Luke have contrasting levels of experience, but are both talented players with the potential to play important roles in the coming weeks while two members of our initial squad are set to be out of action.”