Friday big match update

Date published: Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Following on from the news earlier today Oldham can confirm the identity of some of the senior stars who will turn out for St Helens at Whitebank Stadium on Friday.

Ade Gardner, Josh Perry, Chris Flannery, Shaun Magennis, Scott Hale, Nathan Ashe and Carl Forster will all take their place in the team alongside other full time professionals from St Helens.

Winger Gardner (squad number 2) has made 252 appearances for the Saints scoring an impressive 162 tries during that time and is also an England and Great Britain International. He, like our own Lucas Onyango, suffered an achilles injury in 2011 which ended his season early.

Prop forward Perry (8) is an Australian International and State of Origin player who joined Saints in 2011. He has played 234 career games and was with Newcastle Knights and Manly Sea Eagles before coming over to England.

Chris Flannery (13) is another Australian who has played both in the forwards and at centre when needed. He made 121 appearances for the Sydney Roosters and featured in 10 State of Origin games for Queensland. He has played 105 times for the Saints and is a vastly experienced and respected player.

Shaun Magennis (18) has made 24 first team appearances of which 19 were in 2011. He is a hard running forward who signed from Blackbrook and big things are expected of him this season.

Another player who made his debut in 2011 and went on to make 4 appearances during the season is Scott Hale (squad number 23), A prop he is another player the Saints are hoping for big things from this season.

A name familiar to Oldham fans will be that of Nathan Ashe, younger brother of former Roughyeds player Matt.  Full back Nathan, whose squad number is 24, also made his debut in 2011 and went on to make a total of 5 first team appearances and will be keen to extend that number this season.

Carl Forster (squad number 25) is another player who after making his Super League debut last season had his time brought to a halt by a shoulder injury. The second row or prop will be keen to get back on track as soon as possible.

Chris Hamilton said “the calibre of these players makes the game a mouth watering prospect for us. With the vast experience that players like Gardner, Perry and Flannery bring, coupled with the emerging talent that St Helens have long been admired for, it should make for a superb nights entertainment and we hope that our fans will also relish the chance to see players who we only normally see on the TV playing on our ground.

It will be a fantastic opportunity for our players as well to gauge themselves against such high quality opposition and there is no doubt whatsoever it will be a big stepping stone as both clubs gear up for the start of their respective seasons.

As it is our only home game of pre season we are hoping for a big crowd to come and get behind the team in what will undoubtedly be a very tough match for us. With St Helens fans also expected to make the trip in reasonable numbers it will be a good atmosphere too so we are all looking forward to it”

Kick off is 8.00pm and reduced prices apply for this game at £10 adults, £8 concessions and £2 under 16s. Seat transfers are available at £2 on a first come first served basis. Season ticket holders are reminded that this is an all pay match.

The social club will be open before and after the match.