Coventry tie on March 1

Date published: Thursday, December 11, 2014
OLDHAM RL have confirmed that their first-round League One Cup clash with new boys Coventry Bears at Whitebank will be on Sunday, March 1 with a 3pm kick-off.
It will be the start of the season  proper, following warm-up games against Swinton Lions on Sunday, February 1, Leigh Centurions on Sunday, February 8  and Barrow Raiders on Sunday, February 15, all away from home.
March has been set aside for the early rounds of the League One Cup and the Challenge Cup, Oldham opening up in the new Kingstone Press League One with a derby clash at Rochdale on Good Friday, April 3 (kick-off 3pm).
The first home game in the league is on Sunday, April 12 when Coventry are at Whitebank for the second time in six weeks.
Coach Scott Naylor, meanwhile, is banking on doing well with a smaller squad than he has had in his first two seasons at Whitebank, but one which he believes will have more quality.
Of the 21 players already contracted for 2015, three will be wearing Oldham jerseys for the first time — wing or full-back Jarrod Ward, prop Adam Neal and utility back Jack Holmes.
“We can also bring in players on loan and dual-reg and we’re hoping to keep the injury list to a minimum as we have done in the last two seasons,” said the Roughyeds boss. “In this league, that’s a necessity.”
He said injuries didn’t entirely rest on good or bad luck, but to a large degree on the quality of pre-hab and rehab.
“The needs of the lad who’s been brick-laying all day are different to those of his team mate who’s been sitting all day at a desk,” he added.
“We try to make conditioning specific to the individual and then push them to their limits. That has certainly had a large bearing on how we have fared on the injury front in the last two years.”
* ORSA (the Roughyeds’ Supporters’ Association) and Higginshaw ARLFC are staging a quiz and family fun night tomorrow at the Higginshaw club (8pm).