CHRIS Hamilton is named on a six-man panel appointed by the Rugby Football League (RFL) to examine the sport’s disciplinary system and to identify its strengths and weaknesses.
The Oldham chairman is one of rugby league’s longest-serving club representatives on the governing body, having been there for more than 19 years.
He will sit on the new Disciplinary Review Group alongside Hull KR chairman Neil Hudgell, Hull FC football director Motu Tony, Wakefield Trinity chairman Michael Carter and the RFL’s Ralph Rimmer and Graeme Sarjeant.
Disciplnary procedures have been the subject of mounting criticism within the game over the last 12 months.
Rule Changes Welcomed
Oldham, meanwhile, have welcomed rule changes to be introduced in the new season, which include a tap-kick restart after a 40-20 (instead of a scrum) and the requirement of defensive players at a scrum (other than the scrum-half) to retire ten metres or more instead of the previous five metres.
Also, a player taking the ball while straddling the dead-ball line or touch-in-goal line will no longer get a 20-metre restart and the initial tackle on a team taking a 20-metre optional restart will now be a zero tackle.
Said Hamilton: “The changes will suit us and the way we like to play. They are designed to make the game more exciting.
“We’ll no longer have to wait for defensive sides to form a scrum after a 40-20; and we like the idea of having more room from a scrum in which to launch attacks.
“In fact, we don’t have a problem with any of the changes.”
Roughyeds coach Scott Naylor is one of five nominees for a 2016 Championship coach-of-the-year award in a League Express poll.
Readers of the trade paper are invited to select from Andrew Henderson (London Broncos), Neil Jukes (Leigh Centurions), John Kear (Batley Bulldogs), Jon Sharp (Featherstone Rovers) and Naylor, who kept his Championship new boys in the division despite overwhelming odds.
With only three days to go to the deadline for getting season tickets at current discounted prices, Oldham report an increase on last year’s sales with a healthy number of fans buying for the first time.
You can buy online at the dedicated payment site or by cheque or cash at the club office at Whitebank (inside the ground) between 9.30am and 1.30pm today and tomorrow and on Friday — deadline day — between 9.30am and 3.30pm. Alternatively, ring 07904898177 for more information.
The players will get some time off over the festive season, but they will train tonight and Thursday night this week and on Wednesday night next week before returning to normal Tuesday. Thursday, Saturday training in the first week of January, building up to the first friendly away to Swinton Lions on Sunday, January 8.