Lippy free to face Fax


RICHARD Lepori will be free to play at Halifax on Sunday as Oldham bid to cement their place in next season’s Championship.

The incident in which he was sent off for striking Sheffield loose-forward Michael Knowles just before half-time at Bower Fold on Monday will be studied today by the Rugby Football League’s Match Review Panel.

But the case won’t go in front of the Disciplinary Committee, always assuming he is formally charged, until next Tuesday, by which time Roughyeds will have only two games left against Whitehaven at home and Dewsbury Rams away unless they were to sneak into the Shield semi-finals.

Of greater importance is the fight to finish outside the bottom two and Scott Naylor’s men go to The Shay on Sunday (3pm) knowing that victory against Halifax at the third attempt this season would see them safely over the line.

They could lose and still be assured of survival but that would require Whitehaven to lose at Dewsbury and Workington to go down at Sheffield.

Halifax are among only four Championship teams out of 11 that Roughyeds haven’t beaten at least once in their first season at this level — and the other three are full-time professional outfits in Leigh Centurions, London Broncos and Bradford Bulls.

Featherstone Rovers, Batley Bulldogs, Sheffield Eagles (twice), Dewsbury Rams, Swinton Lions (twice), Workington Town and Whitehaven have all been sent packing at least once and Roughyeds will be keen to add Halifax to the list.

They won 42-28 at Bower Fold on Good Friday but were fortunate to edge home 12-6 at The Shay in May.

Scott Turner, Phil Joy, Kenny Hughes and Will Hope will be back in contention for places against a home side that had lost six on the spin before doing Roughyeds a favour with a comfortable win at Whitehaven on Monday.

Joy is still waiting for his 100th Oldham appearance. If he reaches the milestone on Sunday he will share it with Halifax and former Roughyeds pair Miles Greenwood and Ben Heaton who are each one game away from a century of outings for Fax.

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