All fit and ready to go

Date published: Wednesday, August 27, 2014
OLDHAM will be at full strength when they go to Gateshead Thunder on Sunday for one of their most important games of the season.
A win on Tyneside would put them within touching distance of a second-place finish in Kingstone Press Championship One with all the play-off benefits that go with it.
The Geordies, in fourth, believe they can make a serious bid for the Headingley final and will be desperate to give credence to those ambitions with victory in their last league game over one of the ‘big three’.
With no game last weekend because of the sport’s Wembley showpiece, Roughyeds boss Scott Naylor cancelled Saturday training to give his players a four-day break from rugby.
They were back in for training last night.
Said Naylor: “We had a good session and everybody is fit and available.
“With two regular games left, and then the play-offs, we’ve a block of uninterrupted Sunday games through to the end of the season so we are now starting to focus on the final run-in.
“The full squad will be in again on Thursday and I’ll name the side on Saturday, but I’ve no injuries to cause a distraction so it means I’ll have plenty of options.”
Given that the 38-10 win against Hemel last time out was one of the side’s best all-round performances of the season, anything more than the odd tweak in selection would be a surprise.
The return from injury of David Cookson and Kenny Hughes against Hemel, coupled with the bold decision to recall Brett Robinson at half-back and switch Lewis Palfrey to full-back, meant there was no room for Sam Gee, Danny Whitmore, Ben Wood, Steven Nield, Dale Bloomfield, Paddy Mooney and Mark Hobson.
Added Naylor: “Thunder have crept up to fourth in recent weeks and, given their results and performances (like losing at York by only four points) they fully deserve to be there.
“They’ve got a good coach in Stanley Gene and they’ll give us a tough challenge. At the very least we’ll have to play as well as we did against Hemel.”