Game on awards

Date published: Monday, July 12, 2010

TONY Benson, the Roughyeds boss, was named Co-operative Championship One coach of the month for June by Game On magazine, which is published centrally and which is on sale at every match in the Championship and Championship One.

Our Kiwi team chief has masterminded five wins in a row as Roughyeds have tucked themselves in nicely behind leaders Hunslet Hawks, with Blackpool in third place and pressing hard.

The top three all won this week and it is becoming increasingly like a three-club race for the title and automatic promotion (plus a £50,000 prize) given that Blackpool have still to entertain both Hunslet and Oldham at the Memorial Ground in Lytham St Anne’s.

There was only one Oldham player in the mythical Game On team of the month and that was Ian Hodson in the second-row.

Tony B used his column in Game On this week to heap further praise on Whitebank and the job John Hough is doing with the reserves.

He said of Whitebank: “Securing a full licence for alcohol to be sold in the ground can only add to what is already regarded as a great day out with your mates: a Holland’s pie, and some entertaining rugby now washed down with a nice, cold ale . . . rugby as it was meant to be.”

He said of the reserves: “The style of game they play is a pleasure to watch and goes a long way towards creating the fantastic atmosphere people can now rely on to ensure a good night out at any of their home games at Whitebank.”

Chairman Chris Hamilton also lauded the second team in his Game On piece, but first up he had positive things to say about the whole club.

“The first team has performed very well for nearly the entire season,” he wrote, “and looking back at what the pundits predicted for us prior to a tackle being made,we have already rubbed a few people’s noses in it.

“We have a good team spiri and I would like to think in part that it is down to the way the club is run and that in itself fosters a healthy respect.

“We are continually striving to make ourselves better on and off the field. John Hough continues to make rapid progress with the reserve team which already holds several players on professional contracts. They are hoping to make a way forward in the game.

“Our home games this season to date have seen good attendances with some super rugby to boot. The atmosphere at these games is one to savour.”

Still with the reserves, Tony B has revealed that Scott Mansfield, Michael Cadd, Alistair Williams and new signing Johnny Walker are all training now with the first team squad.

On the back of his superb defensive stint in the reserves 36-18 win at Sheffield on Saturday, Mansfield was called up as 18th man for the first team against Swinton Lions at Whitebank the next day.