Oldham RL Past Players

Date published: Saturday, March 10, 2012

OF the four players who stepped up from the reserves to sign 2012 first-team contracts at Oldham only one — David Cookson — was reared on rugby locally.

Jamie Dallimore comes from Wigan; Danny Langtree from St Helens; and Alex Thompson from Warrington.

A 23-year-old centre, Cookson was born in Rochdale, but he spent nearly all his years in junior and amateur rugby with Oldham St Anne’s, and it was that local connection which caught the eye of the Oldham Past Players’ Association when the committee decided to support the Roughyeds by sponsoring a player.

Said Past Players’ chairman Martin Murphy, a full-back who made a post-war club record 462 appearances for Oldham between 1966 and 1982: “A few players were available, but we felt it was appropriate for our organisation to back a local lad and one who was just starting out on his Roughyeds career.

“It’s good for us to have a link with the present-day Oldham club and we wish Roughyeds, and David in particular, a hugely successful 2012 season.”

A product of Matt Calland’s Hopwood Hall RL Academy, Cookson won several amateur representative honours while playing for St Anne’s.

He played for Lancashire at under-18s and open age; BARLA Great Britain under-23s; England Students, Ireland Students, and a National Conference League select side, the Eagles.

He travelled twice to the Ukraine with BARLA — in 2009 and again in 2010 when the tour party was captained by his now Oldham team mate Dallimore.

An electrician by trade, Cookson said: “I was offered a first-team contract at Oldham on the strength of my performances in the side that won the Reserves Championship last year.

“It’s great to have played in the first team so soon, but I’ve still got a lot to learn as I strive to improve my all-round game.

“I’ve found the step-up a lot tougher and more physical than reserve-team rugby, but I honestly don’t think it is quite as fast.

“I feel very privileged to be sponsored by the Past Players’ Association, whose members include some of the all-time greats of rugby league in Oldham.”

Other Oldham players who have been sponsored ahead of the Co-operative Championship One campaign which starts at Workington on Sunday include the following:

Alex Thompson (WILSCAFF); Matthew Fogarty (Rob the Gardener); Sean Robinson (Hillcrest Electrical Contracting); John Gillam (Nigel Marland); Chris Clarke (Paul Whalley and Kyle Cook); Jason Boults (Sue and Spanish Roughyeds); Jamie Dallimore (The Junction).

Mark Brocklehurst (John Barratt); Liam Gilchrist (ORSA); John Clough (Mick Harrop); Paul Smith (John and Lynda McAndrew); David Ellison (June and Julie Hibbert); Valu Bentley (Sylivia, David and Margaret); Lucas Onyango (Pam Taylor and TTX); Miles Greenwood (AMP Wire); Neil Roden (OJT Communications); Luke Stenchion (Maureen and Peter Woodhead); Paul Noone (Levers Fish and Chips); Michael Ward (Pizza Hut Oldham); Jack Reid (ORSA); Danny Whimore (iKreativ).