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Titus stakes his claim for Town opener

WITH the start of a crucial season little more than 48 hours away, Oldham boss Scott Naylor has emphasised his belief that his 2019 squad is better than the one he had last year.

He’s preparing to go into battle against Workington Town at the Vestacare Stadium on Sunday (3pm) with 23 of his 25 players available and itching to be given first shout on the opening day of the campaign.

It would have been 22, but young prop Titus Gwaze’s arrival on loan from Wakefield Trinity this week provided him with even more options than he initially anticipated.

Highly-rated Titus (19) trained with the squad on Tuesday and Thursday and is among the 23 who will have to be whittled down to 19 and then to 17.

First impressions of the new boy ?

Said the Roughyeds boss:

“He looked very comfortable and fitted in right away. He’s a nice lad who will be a very good addition to the squad, and I’ve no doubt a lot of the fans will like him too.”

Odd men out are Paul Crook with a foot injury and suspended Danny Bridge, but neither Danny Grimshaw nor Ben Davies has featured in any of the three pre-season games because of injury so that might also work against them.

Even so, Scott and his staff will still have some tough selection decisions to make and, as is his custom, he isn’t giving anything away at this stage.

Asked about Workington, who finished higher than Roughyeds last year and got to within 80 minutes of promotion, he said:

“I’m sure they’ll finish in the top two or three so that alone shows that, as an opening-day fixture, it’s as tough as they come.

“They’ve kept most of their lads from last season and have since made notable additions.

“They beat us down here by two points last year and we expect a similar sort of game — tough, close, physical and hard.

“Leon (Pryce, the coach) did a fantastic job at Derwent Park last season and he’ll be all the better for having had his first year as a coach at this level.

“He’s got a big, experienced set of forwards and that was why York City Knights did so well last year.

“Workington are very strong up front and one of the first things we must do is try to get on top of the Town forwards.

“That will be a tall order, but I do feel we are stronger than last year with more experience and more depth in the squad.”

Reports coming out of Cumbria are suggesting Town might have two dual-reg players from Huddersfield in their ranks, but that has still to be confirmed.



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AS lockdown restrictions start to ease, now is the time for everyone connected with Oldham RLFC to do all they can to help with getting income from our Club Cash lottery back to where it was before the pandemic started to bite.

This is vital for the club and its finances which, as you all know, have taken a massive hit in the past 12 months.

Collectors will be returning to door-to-door visits in the next few weeks and we hope people who suspended payments will pick up where they left off as we strive and work hard to get back to where we were before the pandemic caused us to lose 50 per cent of our lottery income.

Many of our regular punters, who would normally pay a collector, have answered our calls for help by finding other ways to pay and to retain their chances of winning prizes.

To those people we are very grateful and we would like to take this opportunity to thank them once again for their loyal and continued support.

The lottery, of course, is potentially one of our biggest fund-raisers and for as little as £1 a week — more if you wish — you can help the club immensely and at the same time have chances to win £1,000, £100, £50, £25 or one of ten consolation prizes of £10.

That’s the present prize structure. There’s every chance it will be increased once we are out of lockdown, door-to-door collections start again and we get back to some sort of normality.

In the meantime you can join, or start up again, by contacting the club on 07904 898177 or by email to: enquiries@roughyeds.co.uk

For more information about the lottery, and for the “great opportunities” provided by our partnership with the National Youth and Community Development Association (NYCDA) go our Club Cash page.

There, you will find all the results and a detailed statement about getting back to normal with the help of our not-for-profit partners.

All proceeds from the partnership will continue to support the club and help us to meet the aims of our Club Cash activities, particularly in its aims and objectives to be an active stakeholder in the local community.

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