Niall Bradley signs

Date published: Tuesday, April 9, 2013

OLDHAM Rugby League Club have signed former Halifax youngster Niall Bradley, who scored two tries for the under-20s on Friday in a 46-22 win against Rochdale Hornets at Whitebank.

The Oldham-born 21-year-old, a centre, was reared on rugby at Waterhead amateur club and in Matt Calland’s Hopwood Hall College squad before going to Halifax when Calland was coach at The Shay.
By an off twist of sporting fate Bradley’s first appearance in the colours of his hometown club was against a Rochdale side now coached by Calland and including some of the player’s former Hopwood Hall team mates.
Said Roughyeds boss Scott Naylor: “Niall has been training with us for a couple of months, but he needed minor surgery on a knee so that held things up.
“Friday’s game against Rochdale was his first since the operation, but he came through that okay and scored a couple of tries in the bargain.
“He’s a young centre who needs a game or two to regain full match fitness, so he will have to keep working hard and making progress in the under-20s.”
Bradley had two seasons of reserve-team rugby at Halifax, but was then released as part of the shake-up when second-team age-related rugby at this level changed from under-23s to under-20s.
He said: “I had the knee operation a month ago, and it stood up well to my first game back.
“I’ve been out of action for a while, but it’s great to get this opportunity to get back into it with my hometown club. I intend to work hard, to learn and to become a better player.
“I played town-team rugby for Oldham when I was growing up at Waterhead and now I’m looking forward to seeing what I can do for my town’s professional club.”
Bradley is expected to retain his under-20s centre spot against Keighley Cougars at Cougar Park on Thursday night (7.45pm kick off).
Oldham’s second Kingstone Press Championship One game of the season, against new club University of Gloucestershire All Golds on Sunday, will be played in Cheltenham at the Prince of Wales Stadium, GL50 4RN, kicking off at 3pm.
The club’s website advises fans to exit the M5 at junction 11 and take the A40 into Cheltenham, then following signs for the Recreation Centre.
The All Golds have posted two wins so far in RFL competitions — the first at Gateshead Thunder in the Northern Rail Cup and the second on Humberside against amateurs Skirlaugh in the third round of the Tetley’s Challenge Cup.