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Adam Hills – from PDRL to black tie at the Baftas

Comedian, writer, broadcaster and rugby league player Adam Hills will swap boots and muddy kit for black tie and polished shoes on Sunday as he heads straight from playing for Warrington Wolves PDRL team in Wakefield to the BAFTA TV awards ceremony in London.

The Last Leg, presented by Adam Hills, Alex Brooker and Josh Widdicombe, is shortlisted in the Comedy Entertainment Programme category.

Adam, who has been at the forefront of the rapid growth of Physical Disability Rugby League (PDRL) in England, will get ready for the prestigious awards in the less than glamorous surroundings of the train from Wakefield to London.

Two games of PDRL with his Warrington Wolves team-mates may be unusual preparation for a national awards ceremony – but being a rugby league player is a huge part of Adam’s life. And he’s looking forward to another high-profile appearance at Anfield later this month, with the Wolves facing Leeds Rhinos as part of Super League’s Dacia Magic Weekend.

“We are all champing at the prosthetic bit for the new PDRL season to start,” said Hills. “It’s hard to believe that the first ever PDRL game was just over a year ago – and since then we’ve seen a viable competition form. With our Wolves team beating the South Sydney Rabbitohs PDRL team in the Club Challenge in Sydney as well, PDRL is going from strength to strength.

“The game between Leeds and Warrington at Magic Weekend will be huge – and I can’t wait to claim some revenge on Alex Brooker for the last time we played each other. I also want as many people as possible to experience PDRL in 2019. Everyone is welcome to come to our festivals, soak up the atmosphere, and become addicted to watching PDRL. Even if you’ve never watched Rugby League before, I guarantee you’ll love it.”

Wakefield Trinity host the first PDRL Festival of 2019 this Sunday 12 May at community club Eastmoor Dragons, where six teams – from Warrington Wolves, Leeds Rhinos, Wakefield Trinity, Wigan Warriors, St Helens and Castleford Tigers – will play two games each.

Then, after a break for the Baftas, Hills heads for PDRL’s big day at Anfield, where the Wolves play the Rhinos at half-time in the Betfred Super League game between Hull FC and Huddersfield Giants (KO at 4.30).

Fellow presenter of Channel 4’s The Last Leg, Alex Brooker, will play for Leeds Rhinos as he and Adam go head to head once more as they did in the inaugural PDRL fixture in February 2018.

As well as the thrill of Anfield, the teams will feature in the RFL Grand Day Out at Blackpool in September as part of an inclusive festival of different formats of the sport.

There’s plenty of action for fans to enjoy with PDRL festivals each month, culminating in a Grand Final Festival at Emerald Headingley on September 29.

Ralph Rimmer, CEO of he Rugby Football League, said:

“PDRL is unstoppable thanks to the brilliant work done through our Rugby League Foundations by staff and volunteers. We’re committed to supporting and promoting all formats of our brilliant sport – Rugby League is always for everyone. I encourage fans to get along to a PDRL Festival in 2019 and I wish all the players, coaches and volunteers the best of luck for a fantastic season – and also, good luck to Adam Hills and The Last Leg at the Baftas.”

Barrie McDermott, the former Great Britain prop forward, and Adam Hills are part of the Management Group overseeing the development of PDRL, with the Group chaired by businessman and volunteer John Welch. Sunday’s PDRL Festival (KO 1pm) hosted by Wakefield Trinity at Eastmoor sees each team play x2 shortened format matches, as follows:

  • Leeds Rhinos v Wakefield Trinity
  • Warrington Wolves v Wakefield Trinity
  • Wigan Warriors v Leeds Rhinos
  • Castleford Tigers v Warrington Wolves
  • St Helens v Wigan Warriors
  • Castleford Tigers v St Helens

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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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