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Northern powerhouse in 1895 Cup

​The teams from the far north, Workington Town and Newcastle Thunder, are through to the second round of the new 1895 Cup, which will be streamed live on the Our League app and the RFL’s Facbook page from 6pm tomorrow.

Town won 31-28 at Hunslet and Thunder beat Keighley Cougars 38-12 at home in today’s (Sat) first-round ties.

The first round continues tomorrow (Sun) when Oldham entertain Whitehaven at the Vestacare Stadium (3pm) and Doncaster are at home to West Wales Raiders.

The winners of each of those ties join Workington and Newcastle in the hat for round two plus Sheffield Eagles, Bradford Bulls, Leigh Centurions, York City Knights, Featherstone Rovers, Halifax, Batley Bulldogs, Dewsbury Rams, Swinton Lions, Barrow Raiders, Rochdale Hornets and Widnes Vikings.

Oldham go into a finely-balanced tie with Betfred League 1 leaders Whitehaven, whose only league defeat so far was at the Vestacare Stadium in February.

The Cumbrians boast the best defensive record in League 1, having conceded only 118 points in seven games, ten fewer than the next best who, surprisingly, are eighth-placed North Wales Crusaders.

The top five defensive sides, in this order, are Whitehaven (118), North Wales (128), Hunslet (130), Keighley Cougars (132) and Oldham (134).

Interestingly, Scott Naylor’s men have scored more points than any of their rivals with a seven-game total of 236, boosted by last week’s 72 at West Wales Raiders.

With 157, Whitehaven are not even in the top five, which are Oldham (236), Newcastle (228), Hunslet (218), Keighley (212) and Workington (198).

Tomorrow’s tie at the Vestacare, therefore, pits League 1’s top scorers against the division’s best defenders in a knock-out competition with Wembley as the ultimate goal.

It should be a fascinating contest and one not to be missed by Roughyeds fans, who will see Danny Langtree and Danny Bridge back in the second-row together for the first time since last July.

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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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