Roughyeds in ‘state of flux’
Reporter: by KEVIN RICHARDSON
Date published: 06 October 2009
UNTIL the ownership of Oldham is resolved, the club can’t make plans for season 2010.
That’s the warning from chief executive Chris Hamilton, less than 48 hours after the Roughyeds suffered an agonising 28-26 defeat at the hands of the Keighley Cougars in the Co-op Championship One play-off final.
The big fear is that until the matter of ownership between majority shareholder Bill Quinn and Hamilton is cleared up, Oldham will get left behind when it comes to building a squad capable of mounting a strong challenge for promotion.
In the meantime, rival clubs are lining up new signings as they look to hit the ground running in Co-op Championship One next season.
The entire Oldham squad is out of contract at the end of November.
Coach Tony Benson, whose own deal runs out this month, wants to stay on to have another go at promotion, but has already admitted hopes of taking a step towards Super League will shrink the longer uncertainty is allowed to continue.
Hamilton said: “We’re in a state of flux with regard to sorting out a budget for next season and the quicker this situation is resolved the better.”
On the playing front, Paul Highton (knee) and Jamie I’Anson (wrist) are expected to see specialists soon in a bid to clear up long-standing injuries.
Meanwhile, former Radcliffe School pupil and Oldham St Anne’s RL junior Kyle Eastmond missed out on being named the 2009 Super League young player-of-the-year at last night’s Super League Man of Steel in Manchester.
The St Helens half-back, who has scored nine tries in 16 first-team appearances for Saints this season, finished behind award winner Sam Tomkins, of Wigan, and Salford’s Richie Myler.
Huddersfield’s Australian full-back Brett Hodgson was named Man of Steel and his boss Nathan Brown was coach of the year after transforming the fortunes of the West Yorkshire outfit.