Clay hunting for tries

Date published: Thursday, April 16, 2015
HAVING gone three games without scoring, Adam Clay will be anxious to add to his try tally in South Wales on Sunday.

Oldham’s right-winger raced to seven tries in the first four games of the season to build a healthy lead  in the Roughyeds’ charts.
His last try was away to Sheffield Eagles in the Ladbrokes Challenge Cup on March 22, but he’s still out in front, ahead of Jack Holmes and Josh Crowley. who are each on four.
“I’m overdue another try, but it’s more important that the team plays well,” said 24-year-old Clay, who was Barrow’s top try scorer with 12 in their Championship season of 2013.
He knows that, in the modern game, there’s a lot more to wing play than scoring tries, as he showed in the opening League One game at Rochdale when he had a blinder without bothering the scoreboard operator.
In a man-of-the-match performance at Spotland he combined beautifully with his centre George Tyson to set up a try for Lewis Palfrey which wouldn’t have looked out of place in Super League. It was centre-wing play at its best.
That superb try, turning the derby upside down on the stroke of half-time, was one of 38 scored by Oldham in their seven games so far in cup and league, scored at an average of nearly five and a half per game.
They’ve won five of the seven, scoring 217 points in total for an average of 31 points per game.
That’s a pretty good record with which to travel to the Valleys where the Welshmen have set up base camp this year at Mountain Ash RFC.
Oldham have won all five games against the Scorpions since Scott Naylor took charge at the start of the 2013 campaign, prevailing 50-22 and 58-2 at Whitebank and 24-12, 36-32 and 18-4 in Wales.
It was on the opening day of last season that Naylor’s men were winning 18-4 when the game at Maesteg was abandoned after 72 minutes because of appalling weather conditions which left some players ill with hyperthermia.
The RFL considered the circumstances surrounding the decision to end the game early and ruled that the result would stand.