“Fortunate” to have two goal kickers

Date published: Thursday, August 7, 2014
SCOTT Naylor has revealed that Oldham fans may see more goalkicking duties shared by Lewis Palfrey and Steve Roper.
Turning four points into six will be crucial in the three remaining league games, followed by the top-five play-offs.
With 53 Championship One goals, club captain Palfrey is second in the divisional list, behind York’s Ben Reynolds on 54.
Palfrey is also the second highest points scorer on 122 — only six fewer than Reynolds.
The Roughyeds’ man was top of the pile for much of the season, but his accuracy with the boot has come under scrutiny in the last five games, which have yielded only 12 goals from 26 attempts. 
At London Skolars in the last of those five games he failed to convert early tries by Jon Ford and Mo Agoro, both of them from wide out.
He was successful with his third attempt, improving Agoro’s second try, but surprisingly he then handed over to Roper, who went on to kick four from four.
Fans were puzzled not so much by the switch, but by the timing of it — not after a miss, but after his first goal.
Said Naylor: “Lewis had a slight groin problem and it was troubling him most when he was kicking for goal.
“To continue, especially when we have another accomplished goalkicker in ‘Ropes’ (Roper), would have put Lewis under unnecessary pressure.
“It made sense for him to hand over to ‘Ropes’ and I would expect him to do the same again in similar circumstances or, indeed, if there was any reason for him to think that was the right decision at the time.
“It’s no big deal. Both are good goalkickers and  I’m not bothered who kicks so long as they go over.
“Lewis is the goalkicker, but he’s also the captain of the side and he knows he has another recognised kicker in the team alongside him.
“In that respect we are very fortunate.”
Roughyeds have had good news regarding new winger Adam Clay’s ankle problem.
It hasn’t stopped him scoring two tries in three appearances and he has since been told he can see out the season.
“He has had a scan which has shown that he will require attention eventually — like end of the season — but in the meantime he can continue to train and play,” said Naylor.
Dale Bloomfield has fully recovered from a dead leg and Kenny Hughes (ankle) and David Cookson (dislocated wrist) will be assessed again next week.
Cookson is training with his wrist strapped, while Hughes is continuing to have rehab on an injury which has kept him out of the last few games.