“A game you couldnt script”

Date published: Monday, May 19, 2014
AN amazing match described by chairman Chris Hamilton as “one you couldn’t script” produced mixed emotions for coach Scott Naylor.

Having completed a torturous Manchester 10k run, in aid of a cancer charity, Scott watched his young Oldham team race into a 27-0 lead against York, one of the strongest sides in the division.
Then, for the second time that day, he went through agonies while watching York completely turn the game upside down by scoring seven tries without reply to lead 30-27.
City Knights, second in the table, looked certain winners until Steven Nield came up with the all-important try three minutes from the end.
Said Scott: “I’m absolutely made up to win the game. We got the result we wanted and winning was everything after our defeat at Hunslet.
“This was a game which gave us a chance to show what we are and who we are —- and we showed it though not exactly in the way I had hoped.
“We showed how good we can be with the ball in our hands, but also how suspect we can be in defence; deficiencies which we have had all season.
“It’s hard to be negative when you’ve just beaten a good team, but the reality is that if York had possessed a goalkicker we would have lost after leading 27-0.
“Our opening 30 minutes were the best since I’ve been at the club, but I’ve got to be honest and talk also about the seven tries we let in and how we came so close to losing.
“A sense of reality tells me I don’t expect us to play as well every week as we did in those first 30 minutes, but at the same time I don’t expect to see ever again the performance we gave in the remaining 50 minutes.
“Penalties were more than two-to-one against us and that’s something we need to look at.
“We got near the York try line only twice in the second half. The first time we lost the ball, the second time we scored.
“For the rest of the half we were defending like mad as they piled into us down the slope and it says a lot about the team’s character that, in that heat, we could still summon up the will to find a way to win in the last few minutes.
“That in itself showed that we have a quality bunch of lads.
“When they are doing the right things they will be difficult to beat.
“I’m proud of them for winning through in the end, but at the same time we’ve a lot to work on.
“We’ve got a run of games now — six more Sundays without a break — and we’ll be going forward as a group with determination, a tough mental attitude and solidarity.
“We still need to find the consistency we had last season, but we’ll keep working at it and see where we are in four to five weeks.”