ROUGHYEDS will kick off their 1895 Cup campaign against Halifax Panthers.
The tie will be played at Boundary Park on Sunday January 28 with kick-off and ticket details to be confirmed.
Halifax lifted the trophy last year, beating finalists Batley Bulldogs 12-10 at Wembley.
Panthers have reached the championship play-offs twice in the past three seasons and will be a stern test for Roughyeds.
It will be the first competitive fixture for the new-look Oldham side, spearheaded by head coach Sean Long.
“It’s a massive challenge – I coached in the championship last year and I know how good a team they are,” said the Roughyeds boss.
“Finny (Liam Finn) is there now as coach, and he’ll be adding his experience to the side. They’re a well-drilled team and they do like to throw the ball around.
“They’ve got some really good outside backs, so we’ll have our hands full.”
Looking forward to the challenge is Halifax-born loose-forward Joe Wardle.
“To play a top team like Halifax will be a benchmark of where we are at,” he said.
“We’re training really well at the minute and all the boys are having a good dig in training.”
“It will be a good game, these are the teams that we want to play against to test ourselves and see where we are at, ahead of the League One season.”
As part of the revamped 1895 Cup format, 21 teams – 13 championship clubs and eight from League One – have been split into seven seeded and regionalised groups of three.
Joining Halifax and Oldham in group 4, will be local rivals Rochdale Hornets.
Roughyeds’ fixture against Rochdale will also be at Boundary Park and will take place on Sunday February 18 with ticket and kick-off details to be confirmed.
Toulouse Olympique and Cornwall will both not participate in the 1895 Cup for the 2024 season.
The winner of each group, after two games played, will qualify for the quarter-finals as well as the best-performing second-placed team.
The final of the 1895 Cup will be played on June 8 at Wembley Stadium.
Should Oldham go all the way and get to Wembley, it would be the club’s first appearance at the stadium in its 147-year history.
The 2024 AB Sundecks 1895 Cup Final is part of a Finals Day triple-header at Wembley Stadium on Saturday June 8, alongside the finals of the Men’s and Women’s Challenge Cup.
Tickets are available online now at rugby-league.com/tickets from only £15 Adults and £7.50 Under 16s, with family packages also available starting from just £18.75 for one Adult and two Under 16s.
Full group stage fixtures are below:
Round One (28 January)
Workington Town v Barrow Raiders
Keighley Cougars v Dewsbury Rams
Newcastle Thunder v York Knights
Oldham RLFC v Halifax Panthers
Hunslet RLFC v Featherstone Rovers
North Wales Crusaders v Swinton Lions
Midlands Hurricanes v Doncaster RLFC
Round Two (4 February)
Whitehaven RLFC v Barrow Raiders
Dewsbury Rams v Bradford Bulls
York Knights v Wakefield Trinity
Rochdale Hornets v Halifax Panthers
Batley Bulldogs v Featherstone Rovers
Swinton Lions v Widnes Vikings
Doncaster RLFC v Sheffield Eagles
Round Three (18 February)
Workington Town v Whitehaven RLFC
Keighley Cougars v Bradford Bulls
Newcastle Thunder v Wakefield Trinity
Oldham RLFC v Rochdale Hornets
Hunslet RLFC v Batley Bulldogs
North Wales Crusaders v Widnes Vikings
Midlands Hurricanes v Sheffield Eagles