Leeds duo extend loan

Date published: Wednesday, July 13, 2011

OLDHAM RL Club have given their Co-operative Championship One play-off ambitions a double tonic by extending the loan deal of Leeds Rhinos duo Callum Casey and Danny Bravo to the end of the season.

They came in June, initially for one month, and they have each figured in the Roughyeds’ last three games —- a 52-16 win at Gateshead, a 40-20 victory against Whitehaven at Whitebank and a 36-34 defeat by London Skolars at The Stoop last Saturday.

Despite the setback in the capital, Roughyeds have scored 23 tries to their opponents’ 13 in those three games, two of them away from home, and have picked up seven league points out of a maximum nine.

The original loan agreement for the two 21-year-olds would have run its course by the time Tony Benson’s men next take to the field against title-chasing Keighley Cougars at Whitebank on Sunday week, July 24, but Oldham moved quickly this week to open talks with the Super League club about an extension.

“We are very grateful to Leeds for their assistance in this matter,” said Oldham chairman Chris Hamilton. “We were keen to keep hold of Callum and Danny and they were more than happy to stay with us until the end of our season.”

The extended deal includes a 48-hour recall clause but Roughyeds believe that any such move, while providing Leeds with a safety net, would be unlikely to happen unless the Rhinos ran into an injury crisis of critical proportions.

Added Chris: “The lads are keen to stay with us, and Leeds want them to carry on here as well so we feel there would have to be a real emergency at Headingley before they would look at the recall clause.

“We are naturally delighted to have acquired their services for the rest of the season because both of them have done very well so far.

“They still have plenty to learn, but they have shown that they are very capable of playing at Championship One level and are capable of contributing much to the team.”

Casey, son of former Oldham prop Leo and a product of Oldham St Anne’s, has played off the bench in each of his three Roughyeds games so far, but he hadn’t been on the pitch very long at The Stoop when he picked up a dead leg which forced his withdrawal.

Bravo, who signed for Rhinos from Huddersfield amateur club, St Joseph’s, has played second-row in each game, operating on the left.

Oldham’s third team, the Extended Scholarship side for under-18s, plays its second game tonight (8pm kick off) against Hunslet Hawks at the South Leeds Stadium.