Looking ahead to Egremont Rangers

Date published: Tuesday, March 20, 2012

LEEDS Rhinos have given Oldham permission to play Matty Syron in Friday’s Carnegie Challenge Cup tie against Cumbrian amateurs Egremont.

The 20-year-old prop, who has signed for top-of-the-table Roughyeds on dual registration, has played in each of the club’s league wins against Workington Town and Gateshead Thunder.

Rhinos would have been within their rights to veto his appearance against Egremont in the tie at Whitehaven (8pm) because he will then be cup-tied and unable to play for them in the same competition.

[singlepic id=1121 w=320 h=240 float=left]All he must do now, however, is convince Oldham’s medical people that he is fit to play despite suffering a wound above an eye in Sunday’s hard-fought battle against the Thunder.

He will be assessed at training tonight along with Mark McCully (hip), David Ellison (shin), Valu Bentley (knee), Lucas Onyango (hamstring) and Chris Murphy (knee).

Definitely out are Luke Stenchion (thumb), John Gillam (toe) and Shaun Robinson (hip).

Coach Tony Benson will stick to his usual routine of training on Tuesday and Thursday evenings.

Monday and Wednesday would be the ideal for a Friday game, but he said: “We don’t have that option because our training venues are booked well in advance.

“We’ll adjust what we do accordingly, especially the night before the game.”

Team selection will be governed to some degree by whether players can get time off work.

Added Benson: “It’s good to have Matty Syron because in the six years I’ve been in England I haven’t had a match against an amateur team that hasn’t been an absolute battle.

“Travelling to Cumbria on a Friday night is going to be as tough as they come.

“We’ve grown in character in every game we’ve played though and that comes down to the brilliant attitude in the camp.”

Egremont warmed up for the tie with a 34-30 home win against Eccles in NCL division one where they are rivals of Oldham St Anne’s.

The fourth-round draw will be made next Monday at 8.50pm at the DW Stadium, Wigan.

It will be the centrepiece of an hour-long RL special on BBC Radio 5 Live Sport Extra which will be attended by all the clubs involved.