Law Cup

Date published: Thursday, October 14, 2010

Oldham Roughyeds will create a little bit of local rugby league history at Whitebank Stadium on Sunday, January 2, 2011 when the curtain goes up on their new season.

It will be the first time since the closure of Watersheddings nearly 14 years ago and the subsequent launch of Oldham RLFC (1997) Ltd less than a year later that Roughyeds will be in a position to stage the traditional Law Cup clash with derby rivals Hornets RL on their own ground.

Roughyeds also confirmed today that the January 2 Law Cup showdown at Whitebank, kicking off at 3pm, will be the first of their pre-season encounters, with details of others to be announced later.

Admission prices have been set at £10 adults, £8 concessions and £4 for under-16s.

When the derby rivals run out at Whitebank, with the famous old trophy up for grabs, it will be 13 years and one day since another Law Cup red-letter day in the annals of Oldham Rugby.

It was on New Year’s Day, 1998, at Spotland, that Oldham RLFC (1997) Ltd famously took to the field for the very first time after starting up from scratch and assembling a squad of players in less than a month.

Hooker John Hough, now reserve team coach, was the first player to sign for the club on December 2, 1997.

Four weeks later the brand-new Oldham team lifted the trophy after a fairytale 36-16 win, watched by a large contingent of Roughyeds fans in a crowd of more than 3,000.

For the record Oldham lined up like this: Mead; Eckersley, Wilde, Cooper, McNicholas; Barker, Flanagan; Guest, Hough, Maders, Quinlan, Prescott, Jackman; subs, Robinson, Round, Leuila, Diggle, Sinfield.

Brian Quinlan kicked six goals and tries were scored by Aidie Mead, Mike Prescott, Joe McNicholas (2), Martin Maders and Ian Sinfield, whose transfer from Salford was rushed through only hours before the game.

In the years since then the odd Law Cup game has taken place at Boundary Park, but most of them have been staged at Spotland.

“It will mean a lot to everyone associated with the club to play a Law Cup game in our own stadium,” said Roughyeds chairman Chris Hamilton.

“And it will stir a few memories too of that other Law Cup ‘first’ on a day Roughyeds fans will never forget.”