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Date published: Monday, March 14, 2011

JOHN Gillam, the Roughyeds’ winger, was to see a specialist today (Monday) to get a progress report on the facial wounds he sustained against Whitehaven a fortnight ago.

“I’ll have a better idea of how long I will be out when I’ve seen the specialist,” said John, who suffered a broken nose and a suspected fractured eye socket when he was buried under a heap of defenders while attempting to score a try late in the game.

He was one of several first-team regulars who didn’t play in the 66-12 win against Gateshead Thunder on the opening day of Co-operative Championship One.

Lucas Onyango was serving the second game of a two-match ban so he will be back in contention for the next game against Workington Town at Derwent Park on Sunday.

Dave Ellison and John Clough had training schedules disrupted by work commitments last week so they didn’t make the side, although they will presumably be back in the running for weekend providing they can train normally.

Also absent yesterday was joint vice-captain Marcus St Hilaire, who picked up a recurrence of hamstring trouble in the Challenge Cup win over Hunslet Warriors.

Hooker Martin Roden, who tweaked a hamstring in the first half of yesterday’s win, retired after 20 minutes and took no further part.

Nevertheless, there were so many good performances that coach Tony Benson will have plenty of choice if Ellison, Clough, Onyango and St Hilaire are back in the frame this week.

“Picking a team to go to Workington won’t be easy. The boys who played well against Gateshead have made sure of that,” said Benson.

Matthew Fogarty, Liam Gilchrist and Danny Whitmore all grabbed the opportunity yesterday to press their claims for further recognition this week.

Seven of the 17 in a young side were Oldham-born and five of the seven — Fogarty, Ben Wood, Jack Bradbury, Chris Clarke and Whitmore — were aged 21 or under, as were Ben Heaton, Gilchrist and Tom Wood-Hulme.

“An all-Oldham threequarter line was a first for the club and that’s the direction the club is heading in. It’s the way we want to go,” said club chairman Chris Hamilton.