THE challenge for Oldham in Sunday’s tough test against Workington Town up in Cumbria will be to at least match the experienced home side’s brains trust, said Roughyeds boss Scott Naylor.
Without naming them, but obviously referring to players like Oliver Wilkes, Sean Penkywicz, Fuifui Moimoi and Danny Tickle, Oldham’s head coach said Town had a team that was packed full of experienced men, several of whom had been “round the block”.
“I’ve no doubt at all that we’ll match them for skill, effort, desire and enthusiasm, but they’ve been in the game a long time. We’ll need to match them in the brains department and then see what happens.”
Oldham will be looking to avenge Town’s 32-28 win at the Vestacare Stadium on the opening day of the Betfred League 1 season in February.
In a tight, tense thriller the lead changed hands four times and in the dying seconds Oldham had a try disallowed for offside.
Town were expected to go on from there and set the early pace at the top of the table, but they failed to live up to expectations with the result that a few weeks ago coach Leon Pryce left and was replaced by Chris Thorman.
The Cumbrians are currently sixth with 12 points from 11 games — two fewer points than Oldham, who are third behind Whitehaven and London Skolars.
Ben Calland (damaged toe) has joined Aaron Jones-Bishop and Kyran Johnson on Oldham’s injury list, but the squad has been strengthened with the addition of new centre signing Cameron Leeming, who trained with the squad last night and will be in contention for selection on Sunday.
Thorman has said that tough defence will be his priority in attempting to take Town into the Championship.
He told the News and Star:
“We’ve been doing a lot of work on ruck defence and tackle technique.”
Oldham fans are reminded that the game is being played at the Borough Park ground of Workington Reds, the town’s football team (kick-off 3pm).