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Remember these guys

Remember these guys? It was 1971 in the old press box at Watersheddings.

A 14-year-old Alan Buke, later to become well known as a Rugby League referee, watched an Oldham game with the then Chronicle reporter Roger Halstead because back then Alan fancied becoming a reporter.

“Those were the days,”

recalls Roger, seen here in his trilby and sheepskin coat. Now aged 83, and the club president, Roger is also the club’s media manager.

He added:

“It’s a totally different scene now. Back in the seventies we thought Alan’s future was at the typewriter, rather than with the whistle, and we sent ‘copy’ through to the Chronicle for the Green Final every 15 minutes on an old phone. Nothing smart in those days ! Once, at the old Hunslet ground, I was directed to a phone point under the stand, the electricity was off, and i sent my report of the game by candlelight. No smart phones, laptops or digital devices in those days. It was basic, but great fun . . . until the phone line went dead and then it was hell.”

Alan, now aged 67 and long finished as the referee, ‘A Burke, Oldham’, tells me this year’s Standard Cup Final at Boundary Park was the 120th anniversary of the Oldham Amateur League’s blue riband event which started in 1904.

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