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Last-day drama faces top six League 1 clubs

​EACH of the top six clubs in Betfred League 1, including Oldham RLFC, is on tenterhooks this week as the last-gasp scramble for final league placings goes down to the wire.

None of the six is mathematically certain of where it will end up as the drama spills over to the very last weekend of the regular league campaign.

That’s befitting of a competition which is generally regarded as the best-ever third tier division in terms of quality, entertainment and excitement.

Leaders Whitehaven need at least a draw at Coventry on Saturday to clinch the title and automatic promotion to the Championship.

By the time Scott Naylor’s second-placed Oldham go to fourth-placed Hunslet on Sunday they’ll know whether they can still nick the crown on points difference or whether they’ll need a win at the South Leeds Stadium to guarantee a second place finish and, with it, the best possible chance of qualifying for promotion via the play-offs.

Newcastle, in third, will finish second if they win at Keighley and Roughyeds go down on a ground which isn’t one of their happiest hunting grounds.

Directly underneath those four, Doncaster (fifth) go to Workington (sixth) with only one point separating them.

Potentially all six clubs could move up or down depending on the last weekend’s results but in all probability Whitehaven will finish top with Oldham and Newcastle occupying second and third spots but in either order.

That will depend on the results from Hunslet v Oldham and Keighley v Newcastle and its fair to say that most pundits would take the view that the Tynesiders have the easier of the two challenges.

That won’t bother Roughyeds who are seeking their ninth win in ten games and know how much it will mean to the club and to departing head coach Scott Naylor if they can nail second place by avenging Hunslet’s 36-28 win at the Vestacare Stadium in April.

Said club skipper Gareth Owen:

“It’s a massive game for us. Assuming Whitehaven win on Saturday, a win for us on Sunday would guarantee us second place which, in turn, would give us a play-off final at the Vestacare Stadium if we were to get that far.

“There’s no greater incentive than that, given that promotion has been our target from the time we assembled for pre-season last November.”

Hunslet’s poor home form in recent weeks has seen them beaten at the South Leeds Stadium by Doncaster, Whitehaven, Newcastle and Workington, but coach Gary Thornton thinks a change of fortune is just around the corner.

He said:

“I think Whitehaven will go up as champions but Hunslet, Newcastle, Oldham, Doncaster and Workington are all capable of beating each other in what is sure to be a cracking play-off series.

“There are some very good teams in League 1 this year.

“It’s been a great competition and the standard of rugby has been fantastic.”

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Club Cash

SINCE Covid-19 caused us to temporarily abandon door-to-door CLUB CASH lottery collections last Spring there’s never been a better time to come on board and help Roughyeds to get through these hugely challenging times.

Why? The £500-a-week rollover jackpot is back — not only that there are now TWO £50 prizes and TWO £25 prizes in addition to the first prize of £1,000, a second prize of £100 and ten consolation prizes of £10.

But the return of the jackpot is the big lottery news. It’s back this week and it’s been won first time out, so next week’s jackpot is again £500 but if nobody touches lucky it will go up to £1,000 the following week and increase by £500 a week, if not won, to a maximum of £10,000.

We have seriously missed the regular income from collections on the doorstep, but we cannot thank too much those supporters who have got behind the club in these unprecedented times of hardship by keeping their Club Cash memberships going or, indeed, by joining for the first time, knowing that for £1 a week they can help the club to combat Covid and prepare with confidence for the challenges of Betfred Championship rugby in 2021.

You can send a cheque to cover a set number of weeks; take out a bank standing order — our preferred option; complete a bank transfer; or pay for several weeks up front by credit or debit card.

You can download a standing order form by clicking on the link at the end of this news release and following the instructions or you can contact our Club Cash administrator John McAndrew (tel: 07980 129541; email: mcandrewj@aol.com) or speak to the club direct on 07904 898177 or email to: enquiries@roughyeds.co.uk

The easiest way, though, is to download a standing order form below. The latest prize updates are shown on the form as follows (all for £1): £1,000, £100, £50 (2), £25 (2), a number of £10 consolation prizes and the £500-a-week rollover jackpot.

Best of luck!

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