Oldham v Featherstone Rovers Betfred Championship Round 19 (Sunday 29th August 2021)
This was a bank holiday clash and it was 13th placed Oldham against 2nd placed Featherstone Rovers.
It was going to be a tough ask for Oldham to back up playing Toulouse the week before to playing Featherstone this week.
Could Oldham spring a surprise or would Featherstone get the win that would guarantee them a home semi-final in the playoffs?
It was played at the Vestacare Stadium
1st Rovers try
After only five minutes, Featherstone were up and running as Walker broke cleverly, he was supported by Blackmore and the ball was passed out wide to Parata to score, successful conversion by Chisholm.
2nd Rovers try
Three minutes later, it was try two as Ferres went over from close range, unsuccessful conversion by Chisholm who hit the post.
3rd Featherstone try
Four minutes later, and a 3rd Rovers try as Gale broke on the right superbly and Welham scored, unsuccessful conversion but was looking like a long and tough afternoon for Oldham.
4th Rovers try
After only a quarter of a hour, it was try number four for Featherstone as Kopczak latched onto a superb crash ball to score, successful conversion by Chisholm.
1st Oldham try
After 22 minutes, Oldham scored their first points as a former Rovers player set Hartley up to score as he twisted and powered over, unsuccessful conversion by Abram.
Three minutes later, Kopczak fumbled the ball 40m out. Then Oldham attacked Rovers line but were held up.
After 36 minutes, Chisholm was sent to the sinbin.
5th Rovers try
Two minutes before halftime, Kopczak scored his 2nd of the afternoon after short pass from Holmes allowed him to barge over from close range, successful conversion by Ferres as Chisholm was off the pitch and Hall was rotated.
2nd Oldham try
There was still time for another 1st half try and ir went to Oldham as Hewitt tried to kick early and gave it to Bridge who went over in the corner, successful conversion by Abram.
Halftime score: Oldham 10-26 Featherstone Rovers
Oldham did well to get back into the game after that blistering start by Rovers, could Rovers seal the deal in the 2nd half?
6th Featherstone try
A minute into the 2nd half, it was try 6 for Rovers as Ferguson caught the kickoff and sprinted 30m before offloading to Walker who scored , successful conversion by Ferres.
After 47 minutes, having returned to the field after his sin-bin , Chisholm went for the 40/20 but Holcroft athletically kept it in play.
7th Rovers try
Just a minute later, Springer and Holmes did some great build-up play and Parata scored his 2nd of the afternoon, successful conversion by Chisholm.
8th Featherstone try
Just before the hour mark, Ferres crashed over from short range to take his points tally to 12 for this game , unsuccessful conversion by Chisholm.
9th and final Rovers try
With three minutes left, the last try again went to Rovers as Walker slalomed the Oldham defence and placed the ball under the sticks for his 2nd try of the afternoon , successful conversion by Chisholm.
Fulltime score: Oldham 10-48 Featherstone Rovers
Another convincing away win for Featherstone as they win away again. This means they’re guaranteed to finish 2nd and therefore a home semi-final in the Championship playoffs as their nearest challengers Halifax can’t catch them. This also means that due to finishing in the top 2 , Rovers wont be in the 1st round of the play-offs and will play the highest-ranked team who emerges from the first set of games.
Next for Rovers is their final West Yorkshire derby of the season against Halifax in what could be a dress rehearsal for the play-off semi final, and Rovers are looking to do something special in this game which is a world record of most flatcaps in one place at the same time, but I’ll explain more in my blog next week.