Luke Stenchion update

Date published: Tuesday, February 28, 2012

PROP Luke Stenchion, injured in Oldham’s pre-season friendly at Whitehaven last month, is likely to miss the first three league games of the season — at least.

He broke a thumb in three places and there are now fears that he may need an operation.

“My prospects for an early return are not looking good,” said the former Batley and Dewsbury front-row man, who impressed last season as a solid grafter who would always give 100 per cent.

On his latest visit to the specialist the thumb was put in plaster.

“That’s got to be on for a month,” he added, “and then the specialist will decide whether I need surgery in which case I would be out for a while longer.”

This is coach Tony Benson’s second setback to his front-row plans following the announcement that new signing Danny Heaton no longer figures because of his continued absence from training.

Instead of heading into the new Championship One campaign with six props, Benson now has only four —– Liam Gilchrist, Jason Boults, David Ellison and Bruce Johnson

It all kicks off at Workington a week on Sunday, March 11 (3pm), but before then Roughyeds must play their fourth and final Northern Rail Cup game at Keighley Cougars this Sunday, kicking off at 2pm.

The Junction Inn at the bottom of Ripponden Road is running a supporters’ bus to Cougar Park, priced £7.50, but seats must be booked at the Junction by 10pm Thursday.

Also on Thursday the Supporters’ Association (ORSA) will hold its annual general meeting at Whitebank (7.30pm). Members must have their cards with them to register a vote.

A three-man fact-finding delegation from Hemel Stags was at the Oldham-Dewsbury game, ahead of their entry into Championship One at the start of the 2013 season.

Stags will line up with Northampton and two more clubs, still to be announced, in a revamped division.

Chairman Bob Brown, coach Troy Perkins and vice-chairman Ernie Howell travelled north to watch the Oldham game and to examine what was involved in staging it.

Brown launched the Stags in 1981 as a pub team in borrowed shirts, but he always cherished the dream of taking it one day into the part-time professional arm of the RFL.

“Our visit to Oldham was part of our preparations for 2013,” he said. “We wanted to look at what happened on and off the field.

“We are grateful to Chris (chairman Hamilton) and his staff for their hospitality and assistance and to Janet in the office for telling us all about the match-day operation.

“We thought the second half was full of excitement as Oldham hit back, but our coach felt he could definitely put out a side that would at least compete with them.”