Thornton signs one-year deal at Roughyeds

Date published: 02 December 2021

Relegated Oldham Rugby League Club, rebuilding on a tight budget in the hope of regaining Championship status at the first attempt, have signed 26-year-old former Bradford, Hemel, Featherstone Rovers and Dewsbury Rams forward James Thornton to take their squad numbers to 23.

"The club deserves massive credit for that," said new head coach Stu Littler. "From a standing start, we are now at the stage where we can talk about shirt-challenging and competition for places."

Thornton, who has signed a one-year deal, said: "I got a serious knee while I was at Featherstone, but I'm fully fit now and ready to go.

"I've never shied away from the tough stuff and I don't mind mixing it a bit if I have to.

"Everyone speaks highly of Oldham and I want to be part of what they are trying to achieve both on the field and off it. The least we should be striving for is a play-off spot."

Of the 23 players Oldham have signed so far -- they say they haven't finished yet -- 17 are new to the club with only six remaining from last season: forwards Luke Nelmes and Brad Jinks and backs Joe Hartley, Ben Holcroft, Tommy Brierley and Dave Hewitt.

With a new coach in former Swinton Lions boss Littler; a new vice-chairman on board in ex-Leigh and Swinton chairman John Roddy; and the launch of a new Supporters' Club, Roughyeds are indeed "rebuilding from a standing start", as Littler says.

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