Farewell and good luck to Luke

Date published: Tuesday, July 26, 2011

BIG prop Luke Sutton, who is emigrating with his family to Australia, will play his last home game for Oldham RL Club against Workington at Whitebank on Sunday.

He will be available for the derby clash with Rochdale at Spotland on Sunday, August 14, but after that he will bid farewell to the Roughyeds, whom he joined from Keighley midway through the 2008 season.

[singlepic id=821 w=320 h=240 float=left]Given that fellow front-row men Dave Ellison and Bruce Johnson are currently out injured, Sutton’s departure will hit Oldham hard, although Johnson might have recovered from a finger injury by then while youngsters Liam Gilchrist, Tom Wood-Hulme and Danny Langtree, who plays consistently well in the Reserves, will be pushing to take his place.

Sutton flies to Brisbane on August 20 with his wife Kelly and five young daughters, Tia, Jade, Lexie, Connie-Rae and Esme.

Though born in England, he lived in Queensland from the age of five to 18 when he returned to this country and settled with his family in Rochdale.

Seven years on he and Kelly have decided to return to Australia in order to bring up their daughters Down Under and to fall in line with the wishes of the player’s late mother, who died earlier this year.

Said Luke: “I didn’t want to go until the end of the season, but flights then will be much dearer then than they are in August, which is the cheapest time we can go. There are seven of us, so that has to be the major consideration.

“It will seem strange to run out at Whitebank on Sunday knowing it will be for the last time.

“I would like to thank everyone at the club, all the fans and especially my Roughyeds team mates for all the help and support they have given me in the last three years.

“The lads have targeted four wins from their last four league games, followed by a big push in the play-offs, and I know they will give it their best shot. Once I’ve gone I’ll be rooting for them from a distance.”

Sutton has no immediate plans to play in Australia, but he hopes eventually to go back to the club where he played as a boy, Brisbane-based Redcliffe Dolphins, who are in the Queensland League..

Roughyeds train tonight (tues) when the medical staff will check out three players who were hurt in Sunday’s 36-14 win against Keighley —- backs Shaun Robinson and Mark McCully and second-row man Danny Bravo.

Robinson, clearly shaken up, was taken off near the end as a precaution after taking a blow to the head, while McCully and Bravo each suffered gashes above the eye caused by a clash of heads.

Roughyeds play three games in three days over the weekend, with the Reserves taking on Leigh Centurions on Saturday (2.30), the first team playing Workington on Sunday (3pm), both at Whitebank, and the scholarship under-18s going to Keighley on Monday (8pm).