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Naylor pleased with his side’s guts and graft

DESCRIBING conditions at Barrow as “among the worst I’ve ever known”, Scott Naylor praised his much-changed side, which included five trialists, for their honesty, effort and resolve in taking a tight game down to the wire.

Barrow won 16-6, but five minutes from the end they led only 10-6 and for much of the second half Roughyeds looked capable of snatching the lead without being able to turn pressure into points.

Said Naylor:

“It wasn’t a game for the fans or for the rugby league purists, but conditions were awful and I was really pleased with our attitude and effort.

In atrocious weather on a soggy pitch it was more like a good training session and a stiff work-out than a good match, but players like Craig Briscoe and Phil Joy, both coming back after long spells out with injuries and surgery, will have benefited enormously from getting good minutes on the field.

All five trialists did well and three of them (West, McComb and Barlow) played the full 80. Barrow is always an extremely difficult place for anyone to play their first game, let alone in conditions like there were here.

We matched Barrow in most elements of the game and there was nothing between us for most of the game.

In truth, we lacked some cutting edge when we had opportunities to score and that’s something we need to work on. But at 10-6 after 76 minutes it was wide open and it was anybody’s game.

That tells us that, going forward, we have everything we need in the departments of attitude, heart and desire. I don’t think we’ll have any problems there.

We need to improve a little bit in how we use the ball when we’re in possession and attacking our opponents’ line, but if we can improve in that respect we should be fine.”

At the end of the game, both teams and all three officials literally ran off the pitch and cleared it in seconds.

Added the Roughyeds boss:

“The game should have been stopped after about an hour. Player welfare is paramount and they were in danger of suffering from hypothermia. I think two of the Barrow lads needed medical attention in the dressing room.”

Oldham’s third and final warm-up game is at the much-improved Vestacare Stadium (formerly Whitebank) on Sunday (January 28), kick-off 3pm and after two highly-encouraging performances against Rochdale and Barrow, the club is hoping supporters will turn up in numbers as Naylor’s men return to their Oldham base after two seasons playing out of town at Stalybridge.

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Club Cash

AS you all know from your own experiences these are tough times for everybody, but we believe you will agree that OLDHAM RLFC is taking massive inspiration from the fabulous NHS and other key workers in tackling Covid head-on, while looking forward positively to the 2021 season and better times ahead thanks to the outstanding work now being done to get people vaccinated as quickly as possible.

Nevertheless, we have to face facts and be realistic enough to accept that the club urgently needs every pound that is currently coming in from whatever source. One of those sources is our Club Cash lottery and we would like to take this opportunity to thank all those who support us on this. A lot of you who used to pay our collectors on the doorstep have responded to our suggestions on how to pay by different methods and we are extremely grateful for that. Thanks again. You will never know how much difference your contributions make.

Alas, our income from the lottery has dropped by more than 50 per cent over the course of the pandemic and that would be a huge blow financially at any time let alone a time of unprecedented hardship because of the pandemic. It really is a situation we seriously need to address.

With that in mind the prize fund for the duration of the latest national lockdown will be temporarily reduced from February 10.

You will still be able to win a £1,000 first prize, plus £100, £50, £25 and ten £10 prizes every week, while continuing to provide vital support for the club and it will only cost you £1 a week. You can’t get a decent coffee for that, but the difference it makes to the club when multiplied a few times over and then multiplied again by 52 – the number of weeks in the financial year – is of major significance.

If you can help us at all — for £1 a week — it would be hugely appreciated by everyone with Oldham RL Club at heart. The prize structure still represents good value for money for an outlay of £1.

To those who are already members and help us accordingly, we very much hope to retain your support at this extremely difficult time.

Should you wish to play but don’t, due to the pausing of cash collection rounds, we have other options available, which you can discuss with our lottery administrator, John McAndrew on 07980129541 or from the club on 07904 898177.

Alternatively, you can send an email to: mcandrewj@aol.com or to: enquiries@roughyeds.co.uk

The prize fund will be increased back to previous levels as soon as latest lockdowns are released. Please watch our website and social media platforms for further announcements.

Finally, if you want more information about the lottery or you wish to discuss your membership please contact one of the numbers given above.

A huge thank-you to you all.

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