WE kicked off the 2017 Kingstone Press Championship campaign with a very encouraging 26-10 win against Sheffield Eagles at Bower Fold.
Eagles led 6-4 at half-time, but we had use of the slope in the second half and we made it count to dominate the second 40 with three tries and five goals to a solitary try by Sheffield.
Danny Langtree (2), Adam Clay and David Hewitt (interception) scored Oldham tries, while Scott Leatherbarrow added three conversations and two penalty goals.
The Sheffield tries were scored by Matty Fozard in the fifth minute and Ryan Millar in the 66th.
OLDHAM: Turner; Clay, Egodo, Grimshaw, Gill; Leatherbarrow, Hewitt; Joy, Owen, Neal, Wood, Langtree, Spencer. Subs: Hughes, Gee, Ward, Dickinson.
Referee: Chris Campbell
Scott Naylor, meanwhile, isn’t the sort of bloke to get carried away on the back of one win, but he was understandably delighted by the way his Roughyeds put poor pre-season form behind them to kick off their Kingstone Press Championship campaign with two precious points on home soil.
Describing the 26-10 triumph against a massive and physically intimidating Sheffield Eagles outfit as “the perfect way” to start a new season, the Oldham boss said: “I couldn’t have asked for anything more.
“We restricted a big, strong, powerful side to two tries — and if somebody had offered me a 26-10 win before the start they would have got a resounding ‘yes’.
“The lads deserve huge credit. Sheffield are big and strong all over the field, with good half-backs and plenty of power out wide. They’ll beat a lot of teams, believe me.
“We started nervously, but I wasn’t too concerned when Eagles scored an early try because I knew they wouldn’t be able to maintain that sort of intensity.
“Once we got into the game we looked very good and we could easily have had three more first-half tries to add to the one by Danny Langtree.
“We need to kick on now and improve a little bit every week.
“It’s clear that our kicking and our understanding of the game is better (than last year) and we’ll take an awful lot out of this performance as we move forward.
“In terms of confidence, self-belief and giving us something positive to talk about, it will do us a world of good and we’ll be able to take those things into the next game.
“The friendlies are in the past and we’ve just won our first league game, so let’s take a lot from it and all move forward together.”