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Two games from 1895 cup semi-final

IF all goes according to plan, Roughyeds will be back in action on March 21 in the first round of the Challenge Cup.

And if they win that and then win again in round two a week later, they will be only one game from Wembley in the semi-final of the AB Sundecks 1895 Cup as well as going through to the third round of the Challenge Cup.

The first round of the Challenge Cup will be contested by the 13 UK-based Betfred Championship clubs (no Toulouse Olympique) plus League 1 clubs Barrow Raiders, Keighley Cougars and West Wales Raiders.

March 21 will be one year and two weeks since Roughyeds' last played against Dewsbury Rams at Bower Fold in the ill-fated Betfred Championship season of 2020.

It was after that match, on March 8 last year, that newly-promoted Roughyeds' return to the Championship came to an emergency stop because of Covid and the first national lockdown.

Matt Diskin’s side had won one of their five Championship games – at Whitehaven against fellow-promoted Cumbrians – but since then they have assembled a strong-looking squad of 27, which includes 12 new signings, for the 2021 campaign.

The Championship will kick-off on the Easter weekend, April 2 to 4, and run until the start of a top-six play-off series in September and October.

Each team will play nine of the other 13 teams twice, and the other four once, in a 22-game fixture formula which has been agreed by the RFL and by Championship clubs.

A decision on whether to go for a 23rd fixture in a Summer Bash event will be made later.

Clubs have agreed that games played behind closed doors will be streamed live on the RFL’s Our League platforms (app and website) on a pay-to-view basis with home season-ticket holders given free access to the live stream packages for their club’s league games.

The Championship was originally due to kick off on the last weekend in February, but following a pause in training after the announcement of the latest lockdown, clubs agreed with the RFL that it would make sense to delay the start given the current health situation and the desire to keep behind-closed-doors games to a minimum.

For similar reasons, the start of Betfred League 1 has been put back to May 8/9, which will allow each team to play the other nine twice in an 18-game season, followed by a play-off.

Details of promotion and relegation will be finalised at a meeting of clubs next week, ahead of the circulation of fixtures.



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AS lockdown restrictions start to ease, now is the time for everyone connected with Oldham RLFC to do all they can to help with getting income from our Club Cash lottery back to where it was before the pandemic started to bite.

This is vital for the club and its finances which, as you all know, have taken a massive hit in the past 12 months.

Collectors will be returning to door-to-door visits in the next few weeks and we hope people who suspended payments will pick up where they left off as we strive and work hard to get back to where we were before the pandemic caused us to lose 50 per cent of our lottery income.

Many of our regular punters, who would normally pay a collector, have answered our calls for help by finding other ways to pay and to retain their chances of winning prizes.

To those people we are very grateful and we would like to take this opportunity to thank them once again for their loyal and continued support.

The lottery, of course, is potentially one of our biggest fund-raisers and for as little as £1 a week — more if you wish — you can help the club immensely and at the same time have chances to win £1,000, £100, £50, £25 or one of ten consolation prizes of £10.

That’s the present prize structure. There’s every chance it will be increased once we are out of lockdown, door-to-door collections start again and we get back to some sort of normality.

In the meantime you can join, or start up again, by contacting the club on 07904 898177 or by email to: enquiries@roughyeds.co.uk

For more information about the lottery, and for the “great opportunities” provided by our partnership with the National Youth and Community Development Association (NYCDA) go our Club Cash page.

There, you will find all the results and a detailed statement about getting back to normal with the help of our not-for-profit partners.

All proceeds from the partnership will continue to support the club and help us to meet the aims of our Club Cash activities, particularly in its aims and objectives to be an active stakeholder in the local community.

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