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Wilky comes home to re-pay the fans

Matty Wilkinson in the act of scoring a try for Oldham (against Whitehaven in 2019)

Roughyeds are delighted to welcome back hooker Matty Wilkinson to the club on a one-year deal ahead of the 2023 season.

Matty, who was part of our promotion-winning side that defeated Newcastle Thunder 18-14 in the 2019 decider, joins us from Swinton Lions with the aim of putting yet another promotion under his belt.

He said:

“I’ve been promoted with Oldham and Swinton, so I know how to get out of Betfred League One and hopefully we can do the same again this year.

“I really enjoyed my time at Oldham so it was a good opportunity to come back and re-pay the fans.”

Wilkinson first joined Oldham well into the 2017 Championship season, but his best seasons in red and white were in 2018 and 2019 (both League One) when he played 42 games in total and scored 19 tries.

His overall record in Oldham colours previously was 21 tries in 57 games, but a broken leg put an end to all that and Roughyeds fans never saw him again in an Oldham shirt because he was at Swinton by the time he could play again.

After a solid year at Heywood Road, which resulted in another promotion, he feels his best rugby is yet to come.

He said:

“I’m fully fit - I played every game for Swinton last year and I started hitting my straps at the back end of the season so, hopefully, I can take that into this season.

“This will be the first proper pre-season I’ve had since I broke my leg so I’m hoping for a big pre-season and hopefully go from there.”

Matty, now 26, had an offer on the table at Swinton but was impressed by the ambition shown by Chris and Stu, as underlined by recent signings and others still to come.

“Stu sold me a good vision of where the club is going.

“It sounds like we’re making some decent signings and that’s why I agreed to come back to the club.

“Any Oldham team should be aiming to get back in the Championship as a minimum,” he said.

Head coach Stuart Littler said:

“Matty is someone we’ve worked hard to get back at the club, I was disappointed to lose him last year when I took the job.

“He comes back to us as a promotion winner. He knows exactly what this league is about and how to get out of it.

“I watched him towards the end of the year and he was one of their key performers in their run to the Promotion Final.

“He’s a lively number 9 and a threat from that position and he’s also a quality person.”

Matty would like to put on record his thanks to former club Swinton Lions.

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