Keighley Cougars will be first up on new Oldham pitch

OLDHAM have announced a second pre-season game with the visit of League One rivals Keighley Cougars to the Vestacare Stadium (3pm kick-off) on Sunday, January 28.

It will come seven days after Roughyeds go to newly-promoted Barrow Raiders (2pm kick-off) on Sunday, January 21.

The League 1 campaign kicks-off on Sunday, February 18 (in Oldham’s case up at Whitehaven) and if head coach Scott Naylor’s previous pre-season plans are anything to go by he will perhaps be aiming for a blank February 11 with a possible third run-out on February 4.

As things stand at present, however, the Keighley game will be Oldham’s debut on the new state-of-the-art artificial pitch at the Vestacare Stadium and the Roughyeds’ first game there since their memorable 31-20 win against the Cougars in a terrific 2015 promotion final, watched by a crowd of more than 1,400.

While Naylor’s men celebrated their elevation to the Championship, Cougars went on to beat North Wales Crusaders 32-6 in the play-offs only to go down 29-28 to Swinton Lions in a thrilling final at Widnes.

They have told their fans that in the two years since then, and while Roughyeds were playing at Bower Fold, Stalybridge, the ground previously known as Whitebank has been improved significantly by new tenants Avro FC.

They refer to the new pitch, a refurbished clubhouse, new outdoor toilets and a general spruce-up of the ground.
Of the Oldham side that celebrated promotion with tries by Jon Ford, Adam Neal, Danny Langtree, George Tyson and Adam Clay, only Jack Holmes, Adam Neal, Gareth Owen, Phil Joy, Danny Langtree and Kenny Hughes are still at the club.

It will be a new-look side this time with fans getting an early chance to see new recruits Paul Crook, Luke Nelmes, Danny Rasool, Kyran Johnson, Dave Eccleston, Matt Reid, Adam Jones, Liam Bent and Jack Holmes in their first home game.

Fans are reminded, meanwhile, that to take advantage of the biggest and best savings on season tickets they need to buy by December 22, either online by credit or debit card or over the counter at the club office in the Vestacare Stadium by cash or cheque only.

The office is open from 11am to 3pm Mondays to Thursdays inclusive and from 9.30am to 3pm on Fridays.

Tickets cover 13 home league games and are pitched at a level which provides for the equivalent of THREE games FREE OF CHARGE if bought before December 22.

Standing: adults £140; over-65s £120; under-16s £20.
Seats: adults £160; over-65s £140; under-16s £40.

They will make excellent Christmas presents, as will Craig Halstead’s new book, ‘Roughyeds, Against All The Odds’ which can also be bought, for £12.95, at the club

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