Featherstone Rovers 68 Oldham RLFC 0 - Rovers serve up 12-try victory for returning fans
James Webster felt it was “fantastic” to have Featherstone Rovers fans back in attendance as his side cruised to a huge victory over Oldham on Monday evening.
Rovers recorded their biggest win of the campaign as they welcomed 1670 supporters back to Post Office Road.
It was Featherstone’s first game with a crowd for over 14 months and they served up a treat for the returning home support as they ran in 12 tries to cruise to their fifth league win of the season.
“It felt fantastic to have people back in the stadium,” said head coach Webster.
“I have had a lot of reports that it went really successfully for the club.
“It just adds so much having fans back in the ground. We all enjoyed it and we are looking forward to that continuing.”
Featherstone opened the scoring after the first minute as full-back Dane Chisholm scored with the first possession of the ball.
Rovers went on to score six more tries in the first half with Craig Hall and Jack Bussey crossing twice each before Brad Day and Thomas Minns rounded off the scoring before the interval.
“You don’t see that often, a full-back going the length of the field with his first touch,” said Webster of Chisholm’s opener.
“Dane has done some really good things for us at full-back. He is the first one to put his hand up and say there are a couple of things he needs to get used to because he hasn’t played a lot there.
“You can clearly see the talent he has got.”
Second-half tries arrived from Josh Hardcastle, Tom Holmes, Fa’amanu Brown, Connor Jones and Gareth Gale. Oldham were unable to dent the scoreboard with Featherstone recording their first clean sheet of the season.
Webster has been pleased with Rovers’ defensive displays since a 36-6 success over Swinton Lions last month. Last night’s result means Featherstone have conceded just 32 points in their last 320 minutes of rugby.
“I think we have defended really well from Swinton onwards,” added Webster.
“We have been doing pretty well defensively in the last month.
“Attacking wise we made some more steps again, it is really pleasing.
“We feel we made some steps forward and we will hopefully make a few more this weekend against Sheffield.”
The victory keeps Featherstone joint-top of the Championship table alongside Toulouse Olympique. The match was also the 250th career appearance for James Lockwood, 191 of which have come for Rovers.
Featherstone Rovers: Chisholm, Gale, Minns, Hardcastle, Hall, Holmes, Brown, Kopczak, Parata, Lockwood, Day, Moors, Bussey. Subs: Jones, Cooper, Davies, Field.
Oldham: Green, Ince, Roberts, Heaton, Hutchings, Abram, Hewitt, Reilly, Owen, Nelmes, Bent, Langtree, Spencer. Subs: Fletcher, Pick, Hartley, Gregory.