Battle of Borsdane Woods

Date published: Thursday, November 17, 2011

OLDHAM RL players are psyching themselves up for the Battle of Borsdane Woods.

It will take place soon on day one of pre-season training over a tough woodland course near Wigan.

“It’s a killer — this is one battle the Roughyeds lads won’t win,” said club conditioner Martin Roden.

He runs a gym in Hindley and close by is a well-known beauty spot and protected nature reserve where he will put his players through agony.

Dubbed ‘The Destroyer’, a long flight of steep steps up a cliff side deep inside Borsdane Woods will be the scene of Roughyeds’ first big challenge of the new season.

Each player will be required to race to the top in 20 seconds, and then be back at the bottom and ready to go again inside two minutes.

Added Roden: “They do that over and over again. After the close-season break it’s a case of ‘welcome back, boys’ and those who have suffered in Borsdane before will tell you they hate it.

“It’s renowned for being a killer — Wigan Warriors have been taking their players there for years — and all the boys will suffer varying degrees of distress, some of them fainting and vomiting.

“It’s got to be done and the boys know that. There is no easy way to get back into the swing of things after a long lay-off.”

Each player has been working individually on a weights and cardiovascular programme for the past three weeks.

“They have been given targets,” added Roden, “and they will be tested individually at my gym, before we set off for Borsdane, to see how they have fared.

“Results will tell me how hard each player has been working, or not working, over the past three weeks.

“And depending on those results each player will be given a new programme which he will be required to work on in tandem with squad training over the next few weeks in the run-up to the Law Cup game with Rochdale on Monday, January 2.”

The Supporters’ Association (ORSA) are running a pre-Christmas table-top sale in the Whitebank club on Saturday from 10am to 3pm. Entry free, refreshments available.