Mason recalled by GiantsDate published: Friday, July 10, 2015
OLDHAM have reached agreement with St Helens to extend half-back David Hewitt’s loan, but have waved farewell to prop Nathan Mason, who has been recalled by Huddersfield Giants.
The 21-year-old Oldhamer, who has played in all but two of the Roughyeds’ 18 cup and league games while on loan from the Super League club, is in the Giants team to play St Helens at Langtree Park tonight.
Oldham will miss him, but he goes with the best wishes of everyone at Whitebank and with this glowing send-off from head coach Scott Naylor:
“He’s done a great job for us and we wish him the best of luck as he advances up the ladder with the Giants.
“He deserves his big chance at the highest level. He has given us great service while he’s been with us on loan and I’m delighted for him.
“Paul Anderson (Giants head coach) has pulled him back to have a look at him in Super League and, hopefully, he’ll get a good run.
“We’ll have him back anytime, but Nathan’s focus is on taking the next step with the Giants and that’s no more than we would expect.”
As one door closes on the Roughyeds, another one opens.
Hewitt (19) came initially for one month, but he will now stay to the end of the season, having impressed Naylor with his performances at Gloucester and at home to York.
Added Oldham’s boss: “David gives us another option at half-back. I liked what we saw of him against Gloucester and York. He did well.
“Hopefully, we will have him now for the rest of the season and I’m looking forward to seeing him playing more games for us at senior level.”
Naylor confirmed that, with the exception of long-term injury victims Tom Ashton and Steven Nield, he will have a full squad to pick from for the Rochdale derby at Whitebank on Sunday (3pm).
He will also have dual-reg representation from Huddersfield Giants.
He went on: “Tom Ashton is only a couple of weeks off coming back from injury and Jon Ford could soon be available to bring back on loan.
“The flip side is bad news for Steven Nield. He’s got the results of a scan on his knee and he has suffered a full tear of his anterior cruciate ligament. He’s unlikely to play again this year.
“He’s waiting to see a specialist to find out what’s next, but it looks as though he has played his last game of the season.”
Looking ahead to Sunday, he said: “Form goes out of the window in derby games. They often hinge on the bounce of the ball or which team wants it most.
“In the context of the league, it’s a very important game. We want to stay where we are (top) and if we win we’ll keep Rochdale below us.
“There is clearly a lot riding on this game, but we’ve got home advantage and I’m sure our fans will make that count.”
Naylor will pick from the following 18 players plus any who come in on dual registration:
Crowley, Langtree, Hughes, Roper, Ward, P Joy, Palfrey, Files, Gee, Thompson, Clay, Neal, Tyson, Owen, Holmes, R Joy, Dempsey, Hewitt.