LEON Pryce, the high-profile Workington Town coach, has departed Derwent Park.
The Cumbrians are currently placed seventh in Betfred League 1, outside the play-off positions, with three wins from their first six league games.
Only four points separate the top seven but it might be significant that on Good Friday Workington were smashed 33-18 by deadly derby rivals Whitehaven at Derwent Park after the sides were level 12-12 at half-time.
Whitehaven’s only league defeat was a 36-12 loss at the Vestacare Stadium on February 24, this coming seven days after Workington had won 32-28 here after Oldham led 28-20 with eight minutes remaining.
Pre-season, Oldham, Workington and Newcastle were tipped to be the division’s hottest promotion challengers, but with six rounds of the 20 rounds completed Hunslet and Whitehaven lead, London Skolars are third and then come Newcastle, Oldham, Doncaster and Workington, in that order, all on six points from a possible 12.
Pryce becomes the second victim of this neck-and-neck scrap, Newcastle’s Jason Payne having lost his job a month ago and replaced by Denis Betts as director of rugby and Simon Finnigan as head coach.
At Workington, current coaching staff plus club captain Ollie Wilkes will take charge of the team for this week-end’s trip to Keighley Cougars.
Cougars are bottom but only because they began on minus-12 points because of transfer of club membership after going perilously close to disappearing altogether because of crippling financial problems.
Remarkably, they have regrouped to win four and draw one of their first six league games, joining Hunslet and Whitehaven as the only clubs to have been beaten only once,
Had it not been for their 12-point penalty, Keighley would have been in third place — another example of just how tough and competitive it is in the upper reaches of Betfred League 1.
Wilkinson hoping to be fit
Currently under observation and assessment after a head injury, Oldham hooker Matty Wilkinson is hoping he will come successfully through a head test to enable him to play against West Wales Raiders in Llanelli on Saturday.
After playing against Newcastle, he was told by a specialist that he needed to stand down for a couple of weeks , hence his withdrawal from the squad that played Hunslet on Good Friday.
“I’m hoping the next few days will make all the difference,”
Roughyeds are on the look-out for someone with a media interest or background — maybe a media-degree student —- to join the club’s media team in a voluntary, work experience capacity.
The student would enhance his CV and course portfolio by gaining valuable experience in the Oldham RLFC media department, particularly in the role of providing extra content for our social media platforms with video interviews etc.
Anyone interested can speak to the club chairman Chris Hamilton on 07904 898177 or contact him by email to: firstname.lastname@example.org