Oldham reserves v Hunslet reserves

Date published: Monday, June 7, 2010

JOHN Hough’s Roughyeds Reserves left the field to a standing ovation from nearly 200 supporters after their 58-20 demolition job on Hunslet Hawks at the Whitebank Stadium on Saturday.

The Roughyeds’ attack sizzled in the hot summer sun as Houghie’s boys — 12 of the 17 were Oldhamers — ran in ten tries to add to the eight with which they blitzed York City Knights 48-16 seven days earlier at the same venue, writes ROGER HALSTEAD.

Big centre Alistair Williams scored his second hat-trick in two games while scrum-half Mick Diveney crowned another fine individual performance by landing nine goals from ten attempts to add to his eight-from-nine in the previous game against York.

Michael Cadd, one of several players now starting to make a name for themselves in the Reserves, chipped in with his customary brace of tries and also played a major part in setting up the best try of the game — a real gem.

Diveney and Mark Brocklehurst gave the ball plenty of air deep in their own quarter from a Hawks restart kick. This gave the powerful Cadd room to drive in the left centre channel and he burst through two tackles before unloading at close quarters to Michael Ward.

Ward found Williams on his outside and the long-striding centre sped away up the touchline to touch down in the corner and thus complete his hat-trick inside 35 minutes.

That was top-drawer stuff by any standards and it was typical of the entertaining brand of rugby which the Reserves always endeavoured to produce on the back of a strong performance by the pack and the willingness of halves Paul Ashton and Diveney to make maximum use of the long, wide ball.

Scott Mansfield and Dale Lowe, the hookers, were both lively and constructive from dummy half, while starting props Ben Marsden and Ben Mellor both produced quality spells in their contrasting styles.

Mark Smith, at loose-forward, had a towering game, crowned when he went in for his second try near the end, while new-boy Johnny Walker showed immense promise on his debut from second-row, playing on the right side in the first half and on the left side in the second.

The ten tries came like this:

3 mins: Long balls left by Diveney and Ashton outflanked the Hawks defence and put Williams over in the corner.

5: Full-back Ross Coates, running superbly to clear his danger zone on an exit set, found space to turn defence into attack. He had support on his outside, but he chose to put the pass inside to Smith, who galloped away to the line.

22: Lowe took a quick tap from a penalty close to the line and with a dummy and a shimmy Williams went in for his second.

31: A Cadd special from close in; no stopping this guy when he’s on the charge down the Whitebank slope.

35: The try of the game, finished by Williams.

37: Another huge cut-out pass from Ashton sent 17-year-old Danny Chetwynd up the left touchline. Stepping naturally off his left foot, he beat two defenders on an inside run to the line to register his first try for the Roughyeds.

53: Brocklehurst this time. Replacing the injured Williams at left centre, Brocky followed Ashton’s inch-perfect cross kick to touch down near the flag.

61: Cadd again from close range, this time up the hill on a cleverly timed and defence-busting ball from Marsden.

69: Smith’s second. The loose-forward had a huge game on defence and attack, capped when he sold the sweetest of dummies before driving strongly to go over near the posts.

75: A Mansfield scoot from dummy half caught the Hawks defence back-pedalling after another Cadd drive. Mansfield spotted his opportunity and took it with aplomb.

Coach Hough had to be pleased with this one, but he was quick to point out that Hawks scored four tries themselves on a day when he thought there was no reason why they couldn’t have been ‘nilled’.

“We scored some great tries,” said Houghie, “and I was chuffed with that, of course I was, but in defence we need to be tougher on ourselves and a lot more clinical.

“With due respect to Hunslet I didn’t think they should have scored a single try, let alone four.

“Having said that, we scored some great tries and there were some outstanding individual performances in a good team effort. Bring on Sheffield.”

The Eagles come to Whitebank next Saturday, June 12, when the Reserves will be looking to record their fourth win in six outings. To date, they have won three out of five and have lost only to unbeaten leaders Featherstone, home and away.

Scorers: Oldham — goals, Diveney (9); tries, Williams(3), Smith (2), Cadd(2), Chetwynd, Brocklehurst, Mansfield; Hunslet — goals,Young (1), West (1); tries, Hynes, Bradley, Crosby,West.

Oldham: Coates; Hamilton, J Knight, Wiliams, Chetwynd; Ashton, Diveney; Marsden, Mansfield, Mellor, Ward, Walker, Smith. Subs: Lowe, Brocklehurst, D Knight, Cadd.

Hunslet:West; Childs, Senkiw,Goodman, Challenger; Parnell,Wray; Walkin, Hynes, Crosby, Lacey, Bradley, Young. Subs: Lillywhite, Khan, Straighn.

Referee: Paul Marklove (Warrington); Att: 169.