Loan signings on the agenda

Date published: Tuesday, March 25, 2014
WITH Adam Files, Liam Thompson and David Cookson out injured, Oldham RL boss Scott Naylor is planning to bring in a couple of loan signings.
It won’t be immediately because Roughyeds are without a game this weekend and on the following Sunday they go to Bradford Bulls in the fourth round of the Tetley’s Challenge Cup.
“Clubs who might be willing to loan out players won’t want them cup-tied so there’s no point in doing anything just yet,” said Naylor.
“I’m being offered players all the time, but it doesn’t make sense to bring anybody in for at least a couple of weeks.”
Naylor currently has Alex Davidson and George Tyson on long-term loan from Salford Red Devils and Edwin Okanga-Ajwang on long-term dual registration, also from Salford.
That leaves him with two more loan spots available and he says he needs to fill them to maintain the overall strength and potency of the squad.
He had only 20 fit players from whom to choose the 18 who went to London Skolars last Sunday and won 18-16 to maintain a four-match unbeaten record so far this season.
Tyson (20), a back-row forward, has done well in his two games for Neil Roden’s under-20s squad, but he has yet to play at first-team level.
Okanga-Ajwang (19), a centre, made his debut off the bench at Egremont in the cup and then played a full game at London where he scored his first try at senior level.
Davidson (21), a prop, played in the first three games but travelled to London as 18th man (reserve), having lost his place to another young front-rower in 19-year-old Londoner Paddy Mooney.
Added Naylor: “You’re on the border line when you have only 20 players available. Any more injuries and you are really struggling.
“David Cookson, who has a groin problem, might be back in a couple of weeks, but Liam Thompson is out for a while and we won’t know the full extent of Adam Files’s knee injury until we get the results of a scan.
“We are hoping for the best. I have four hookers (Files, Danny Whitmore, Sam Gee and Kenny Hughes) so I’ve got cover, but Adam is going to be a big loss to us no matter how long he’s out.”
Thompson, meanwhile, has had a successful operation to repair three fractures in an eye socket and his upper cheek bone.
He will be away from the club resting for two or three weeks before he resumes light training and starts a programme of rehabilitation.
“Once he’s back with us, surgery won’t stop him exercising on light weights and taking part in certain other aspects of training, but any contact work will obviously be out of the question for some time,” said Naylor.
“He will have to be cleared and signed off by the hospital before we can even think of getting him ready to start playing again.”
The under-20s play their third game of the season against Featherstone Rovers at Whitebank on Saturday, kicking off at 2.30pm.