LOCAL lad Harry Aaronson, our former Swinton Lions and Keighley Cougars winger, has confirmed his retirement from the game in order to devote all his time and energies to his new full-time employment in recruitment.
The former 22-year-old Saddleworth Rangers product will be based in the centre of Leeds and is expected to be still at his desk in his new job on mid-week evenings when Oldham start training on Tuesdays and Thursdays.
“The way things are at present there is no way I can commit to anything outside of work hours,” said Harry, who has played 11 senior games for his home-town club since arriving on loan from Swinton at the end of May last year.
He added: “The job will involve long hours and late finishes. I’ll still be in Leeds working when evening training starts and the job will have to take priority over everything else.
“If ever there comes a time when I can be a bit more flexible at work that might be something for the future, but for now I’ve got to commit everything to the job.
“If I find I’ve a bit of time on my hands at weekend I might get a game back at Saddleworth, but I’m afraid there’s no way I can commit professionally with all that entails.
“It was a tough decision, but I’m happy that it was the right one.
“I thoroughly enjoyed my year at Oldham and it goes without saying that I wish the boys all the very best in 2021 and beyond.”
He scored four tries in nine games while on loan last year and then, having signed a contract for 2020, played in the first two games of this ill-fated Covid-19 campaign against Widnes at Bower Fold and in France against Toulouse.
He made his debut at home against Doncaster in the 1895 Cup. playing on the wing outside Anthony Bowman. Doncaster won 24-12 and seven days later inflicted a lot of further pain on Roughyeds when winning 31-0 at the Keepmoat.
Jack Holmes was Harry’s centre on that dark day for Roughyeds, but there were brighter days ahead in that promotion year for both the club — and for Aaronson.
Seven days after the debacle at Doncaster, the scrum-capped winger played outside Zack McComb against Keighley Cougars at the Vestacare Stadium and twice crossed the Cougars’ line in a 28-4 win.
He then played in the next six league games, five of them ending in victory, and scored another two tries — again outside McComb — in a 46-30 home win against North Wales Crusaders in mid-July.
He played in total last season nine games in a row, only to lose his spot following the arrival of new signing Declan Kay from Rochdale Hornets.
He returned to the side for the first two Championship games this year, finishing with 11 games all told, comprising of six wins against Keighley, West Wales, North Wales and Newcastle at home and Workinton Town and London Skolars away, with the five defeats by Doncaster (twice), Whitehaven (away) and this year’s two Championship games against Widnes and Toulouse.
He played mainly outside McComb (five times), but he was also partnered by Bowman, Holmes, Cam Leeming (twice), Kyran Johnson and Dan Abram.
His last game was at Toulouse in February this year when a heavily-depleted back division featured Adam Brook at full-back with Abram and Johnson in the centre spots.
Harry leaves Roughyeds — and rugby league — with the best wishes of everyone at the club and a big thank-you for all his efforts on the club’s behalf in the past 15 months.