Featherstone Rovers boss James Webster pleased with pre-season win over Oldham

After their 12-month layoff, Featherstone Rovers coach James Webster was pleased with a 58-10 home win over Oldham in his side’s first pre-season hit-out.

Sunday, 7th March 2021, 11:45 am
John Davies, centre, was among Rovers' try scorers. Picture by Dec Hayes Photography.

Rovers used 27 players - with Webster giving everyone who was fit and available some game time - and ran in 12 tries.

Ben Blackmore, Brad Day and Dean Parata all bagged a brace for the hosts, who led 36-4 at half-time.

Tom Holmes, James Harrison, Connor Jones, Nu Brown, John Davies and Jacob Doyle got the others and Craig Hall booted five conversions.

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Brown and Harvey Spence both failed to find the target from two attempts.

It was Rovers’ first game for 51 weeks and Webster said: “For a friendly, the first thing you are happy about is getting through with no injuries, which we did.

“It was a good hit out, the boys said they were a little bit off in some of their contacts so it was fantastic to give them a chance to feel what it was like again to turn up at a stadium, get dressed and get ready to play against someone else other than your own teammates.”

He insisted: “I did not care at all about the score, I just cared about our performance, where we have to improve and where we don’t.

“It was a pleasing effort and some of the boys have answered some questions.”

Brown, Rovers’ new signing from the NRL, was among the substitutes and Webster said: “He got half an hour.

“He hadn’t played for a long time and because of Covid he hadn’t done a lot of training.

“We thought half an hour was about right for him.

“Dane Chisholm did the same, about half an hour.

“Some of our players played about half a game, but I wanted to give the younger players a chance to play a game as well.

“It was good that everyone played at least 20 minutes.

“We should be over the soreness from this week and by the time the first [competitive] game comes it is not a shock to the system.”

Rovers take on Batley Bulldogs in another warm-up game on Saturday.

Their Betfred Challenge Cup campaign begins at home to Bradford Bulls - who were beaten by Swinton Lions in their opening practice match - the following weekend.

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