Date published: Sunday, July 15, 2012

OUR Reserves followed up their 60-14 thrashing of York City Knights by going to Sheffield on Saturday (July 14) and beating the Eagles 54-22.

These two wins have considerably enhanced our chances of finishing in the top three and thus taking part in the Reserves Under-23s Championship play-offs for the second season in a row, having won the title in 2011.

We led 18-12 at Sheffield at half-time, but took the Eagles apart in the second half to finish with a total of nine converted tries, scored by Alex Thompson (2), Phil Joy, Danny Langtree, Greg Worrall, Ryan Hilliard, Kenny Hughes and Steve Nield (2).

Full-back Nield, who also kicked nine goals, finished with 26 points to add to the 28 he amassed in the home win against York.

He was among the stand-out performers as also were props Langtree and Joy, loose-forward Thompson and three forwards coming off the bench — Mark Brocklehurst, hooker Kenny Hughes and Danny Moran.

Eagles were big and strong, but they lacked the Roughyeds’ guile and craft, especially close to the rucks where Moran, the superb Hughes and Thompson ripped them wide open time after time.

Brocklehurst, who also showed up strongly as a second=half substitute, was in charge of the side in the absence of the unavailable Paul Ashton, who will also be away when Reserves take on unbeaten league leaders Featherstone Rovers at Whitebank this coming Thursday, kick off 7.45pm.

Only three clubs take part the play-offs this year, but Roughyeds have an excellent chance of making it if they can maintain their current form over the remainder of the season, starting on Thursday against Featherstone.

Thompson and Joy scored the first two Oldham tries before Langtree went in for the third thanks to great work up the middle by Moran and Hughes.

Worrall scored the fourth just after half-time by collecting a kick to the corner; Hilliard crossed for the fifth after excellent work by Brocklehurst; Hughes went solo from dummy half for the sixth; then Hughes and Thompson each set up a try for Nield; before Thompson himself crossed for the ninth and final try after a defence-splitting break and pass by the diminutive Hughes.

Team: Nield; Mulkeen, Dean, Mulhearn, Worrall; Noone, Hilliard; Langtree, Connick, Joy, Cunningham, Hinsley, Thompson. Subs: Brocklehurst, Hughes, Wood-Hulme, Moran.

These boys are well worth watching so don’t forget this Thursday night at Whitebank when they take on the division’s crack side in Featherstone Rovers.