Oldham 22- 24 Workington

Date published: Tuesday, August 2, 2011

WE went down to only our second home league defeat of the season when beaten 24-22 by Workington Town in an extremely hard fought encounter at Whitebank on Sunday (July 31).

We were never in the lead, but we gave the Cumbrians a fright when we pulled back from 16-6 down to level at 16-16 midway through the second half and then when we scrambled back from 24-16 down to cut the deficit to 24-22 with four minutes still to go.

[singlepic id=848 w=320 h=240 float=left]Tony B made one change in the side that beat Keighley so impressively in the previous game. It was an enforced one because Luke Stenchion was forced to withdraw on Saturday morning with a back problem so Andy Isherwood took his place in the starting line-up at prop.

Town had first use of the slope to the bottom end of the ground and used it to dominate the first 40 minutes, Roughyeds making life even more difficult for themselves by giving up a lot of possession in their own half.

As a result we had a phenomenal amount of tackling to do, conceding a try to Elliott Miller in the 16th minute and then two more to Jarrad Stack and Brett Carter in the last ten minutes before half time.

Mark McCully scored a cracking solo effort to keep us in the game, but Darren Holt’s kicking game caused Roughyeds a lot of problems. Unlike him, he failed to convert the tries by Stack and Carter, but he kicked a penalty goal early in the second half to stretch Town’s lead to 16-6.

[singlepic id=841 w=320 h=240 float=left]Oldham had the slope now, though, and they forced their way back into the game with two tries in four minutes — the first a beauty by Callum Casey and the second a somewhat scrambled affair by Shaun Robinson in the corner.

Michael Ward’s superbly-timed offload sent Jason Boults into the clear and Casey got with him to take the final pass from Boultsy and cross near the posts. Carl Forber added the goal points, but he couldn’t turn Robbo’s effort into a six-pointer to the scores remained locked up at 16 apiece.

Both teams were starting to tire as this extremely physical clash moved into the last quarter, but Town summoned up the strength to regain the lead with a try by Scott Kaighan, goaled by Holt.

Five minutes later Roughyeds suffered another severe blow to their chances of snatching a win when they were pulled up for a high tackle and Holt’s goal gave the visitors the cushion of an eight-point advantage.

With four minutes left Isherwood crossed for our fourth try after Neil Roden had teased and tormented Town’s defensive line. Forber’s goal made it 24-22 with all to play for, but Holt’s restart kick bounced dead — and that was that.

Oldham scorers: goals, Forber (3); tries, McCully, Casey, Robinson, Isherwood.

Oldham: Heaton; Brocklehurst, St Hilaire, McCully, Robinson; N Roden, Forber; Boults, M Roden, Isherwood, Noone, Bravo, Bentley. Subs: Clough, Sutton, Casey, Ward.

Workington: Carter; Miller, Patrick, Low, Frazer; Holt, Kaighan; Armitstead, Pedley, Coward, Whitehead, McKenna, Stack. Subs: Bainbridge, McGoff, Dawes, Robinson.

Ref: C Leatherbarrow; Att: 684.