Oldham 3rds travelled to Rochdale this weekend hoping that the home side were going to be able to put a team out, after cancelling half an hour before the game on the previous visit. The good news was that Rochdale had a full team plus bench. The less than good news was the unexpectedly strong team that they did field.
The pitch was in excellent condition – a rare condition for a second pitch in February. The weather was also really good although with a very cold wind, but otherwise excellent for rugby.
From kick off, Rochdale were dominant, running through the middle of Oldham’s defence within two minutes for their first try. Oldham tried their best to compete but Rochdale had the stronger runners, putting Oldham on the back foot for much of the game. Rochdale were held until twenty six minutes when they scored their second try, and then another two in the first half to put Oldham twenty two points down at half time.
The second half went pretty much as the first, except that Oldham’s efforts were rewarded with two tries, one from Johnnie Leach and another from Rhys Jones, but Rochdale scored six tries in the second half, to finish a game that was pretty one-sided overall. Many of the Rochdale players looked like they had been drafted in on the day, but Oldham just had to deal with it and take the defeat.
Oldham man of the match went to Les Moran, another great solid performance from Les securing excellent scrum and lineout ball all afternoon.
Report by Nick Middleton