Date published: Monday, July 2, 2012

WE produced a much improved display at Whitehaven on Sunday (July 1), but went down to a scoreline that did not reflect the Roughyeds’ overall contribution to a keenly-contested affair.

Of the seven tries the Cumbrians scored four were the direct result of kicks and of those one was a fluke and another looked to be well offside. We certainly put a lot more into the game than the score would indicate.

The Roughyeds line-up showed several changes from the team beaten so comprehensively by Rochdale the week before. Rob Foxen, who has joined us on a month’s loan from Swinton Lions, made his debut on the right wing and David Cookson came into the side as his centre after spending several weeks in the reserves.

Jamie Dallimore was back at scrum-half after completing his three-match suspension and Liam Gilchrist came in at prop for Lewis Reed, the loan player who had been recalled by Keighley.

We got off to a great start with a try by Mark McCully in the fifth minute, but the home side then hit us with four unanswered tries to lead 24-4 — three of them directly from the boot of their stand-off Jamie Rooney, who also converted two of them to enable him to chalk up a staggering 3,000 career points.

We pegged back six points just before half-time with a try by Alex Thompson which Dallimore converted and then shook ‘Haven with another six points early in the second half when Dally scored a gem of a try with a step and a dummy which took him through the last line of defenders and over behind the sticks. He also added the goal.

We were right back in the game at 24-16, but Haven dug deep to keep us at bay with tries by Dave Houghton and Andrew Beattie, both converted by Carl Rudd.

Refusing to concede, we again came strongly with an attack which provided a try for Michael Ward off the boot of Neil Roden. Dally hurried his kick and put it wide, but at 36-20 we were still on track to get at least a bonus point.

At that score McCully got over, but was held up, and then Dave Ellison went close on a flat pass from Roden only for the pass to be pulled up for forward.

A score of 36-20 would have flattered the home side, but they then scored an extremely lucky seventh try when winger Craig Calvert hacked forward on the first tackle and, a couple of lucky rebouds later, touched down to complete his hat-trick.

Oldham scorers: goals, Dallimore 2; tries, McCully, Thompson, Dallimore, Ward.

Whitehaven: Bauer; Wiper, Parker, Fox, Calvert; Rooney, Rudd; Houghton, Sice, Cullnean, Beattie, Mullally, Doran. Subs: Gee, Isakka, Varkulis, Wilson.

Oldham: Greenwood; Foxen, Cookson, McCully, Gillam; N Roden, Dallimore; Boults, Clough, Gilchrist, Noone, P Smith, Bentley. Subs: Ward, Thompson, Ellison, D Smith.

Referee: Clint Sharrad; Att: 701.