West Hull Cup eprogramme

Good afternoon everyone and welcome to today’s Ladbrokes
Challenge Cup third round tie against West Hull. With the
restructuring of the competition in 2015 I must confess that the
fact the third round draw was going to be entirely open caught
me unawares however the pairing of a number of amateur sides
means that there are great opportunities for teams from the NCL
and other amateur leagues to progress to the fourth round and a
potential draw against some giants of the game. West Hull and
ourselves have fine pedigree in the competition, with Wests
having conquered Highfield, York and in the more distant past
Halifax, whilst our best effort thus far saw us make round four in
1999. Today offers us a realistic opportunity of matching that
feat however in our way stand the best side in the amateur game
at present, with Mark Hewitt’s side completing an unprecedented
quadruple last year and boasting ominous overtones of their
dominance of previous decades. This is one of the stand-out ties
of round three and it should be a fine spectacle today.
Amongst the audience will be some special guests including
representatives from our main sponsors Welch Mill Carpets,
Leigh Cables and JR & Avacab. They will be joined by Alex
Murphy OBE, an RFL Hall of Famer whose name is inextricable
linked to Leigh and the Challenge Cup, and Colour Sergeant
Carl Ruffley of the Duke of Lancaster 2 Battalion, who coordinated the fantastic pre-season training camp for the open
age squad. We hope all our guests enjoy their afternoon.
Today also sees the launch of our new-look programme for 2015
and as always if you have any feedback, comments or would like
to contribute then please let me know. It’s my hope that you find
this an enjoyable and informative read and all feedback on this,
and on all elements of your matchday experience, is valuable.
Next weekend we open our Kingstone Press NCL Premier
Division campaign with a home derby against Wigan St Patricks
(2.30pm, Saturday 14 ). The following weekend is the fourth
round of the Challenge Cup so regardless of the outcome of
today’s game our scheduled league fixture on that day – away at
West Hull – will be postponed.
Enjoy the game
off Kirby Road, Twist Lane, Leigh WN7 4EF
01942 671782
President – Rod Raines Vice-President – Lord Smith of Leigh
Chairman – Roy Walls
Vice Chair / Secretary – Steve Farrell
Head Coaches – Allan Coleman & Paul Whitworth
Conditioner – Phil Marsden
PRO – Jeff Gorse
Good afternoon and
welcome to today’s
Ladbrokes Challenge
Cup third round tie
against West Hull. It
was a quick
turnaround after the
decision to reinstate
us in the Cup to the
Walney Central game
but we took the reprieve with both hands. It was clear to see
Walney are a team who aren’t accustomed to losing games, they
had a few in their team who had played against us for Barrow
two years ago so it was always going to be a tough contest.
Perhaps they weren’t quite up to the pace that we are used to
playing at, but after a slow and scrappy period in the first half we
responded well, we had lots of options in attack and scored the
tries on the back of that. Our new structure this year will take
time for everyone to get used to but it will stand us in good
stead, and when the chances came our way in that match we
executed them well, with Darryl Kay and Haydn Bud Skinkis both
standing out. Of course there are areas to work on, we showed
at times that we are a decent side but there are things we can
improve on particularly on the floor. It was disappointing we let
our guard down in the last few minutes and allowed them a few
tries, albeit the game was won by that stage.
We used the game to rotate the squad and make sure everyone
has had some decent game time. Given where it falls in the
calendar it is hard not to use the Challenge Cup as part of preseason ahead of the NCL league campaign. We have great
numbers at training, over 70 players for the three men’s senior
sides and the attitude has been the best since we came in back
in 2012. The lads know they have to train hard if they want to get
into the squad and then keep their place in the side and we will
have some difficult choices to make again this afternoon with
perhaps nine or ten quality players who are certainly good
enough for NCL Premier rugby having to sit it out this weekend.
We have built a strong bond over pre-season and they will be
here to support their team-mates, but also putting the pressure
on in training to claim their place back in the matchday
Since the Walney game our pre-season continued with
involvement in the Steve Maden testimonial game at the Sports
Village. We had done some video reviews following the Walney
game to identify the
areas we needed to work
on ahead of this test
against the Centurions
selection and right from
the word go we saw this
work being put into
practice by the players.
It was a fantastic effort
by the lads against a
team including full-time
players and some of the
top youngsters at the
Leigh Centurions club
(above right) and it showcased the club and the team in a fantastic light. It
took a real effort by Leigh to nudge in front from the last play after we had
chances ourselves to go ahead, so there are plenty of positives to take from
the experience.
We need to take that into this afternoon’s game. We weren’t expecting an
open draw but it’s a great tie as it turns out. It would be a hard ask facing a
semi-professional side the week before the league season kicks off but
instead we can relish the opportunity to test ourselves against the very best
in the amateur game. West Hull are the team to beat, we look forward to the
match and we know we have the quality in the squad to give a full account of
ourselves. We are still trying to find the balanced team and this is a great test
of where we are at and what we still need to work on – essentially it is a case
of starting the league season a week early. We should have a good crowd
on, it will bring money into the club, and in particular we would like to
welcome our special guests today, our main sponsors Welch Mill Carpets,
Leigh Cables and JR / Avacab and of course also Alex Murphy OBE and
Colour Sergeant Carl Ruffley from the Duke of Lancaster regiment who was
invaluable support in our pre-season preparations.
The Alliance team went down to an unlucky defeat last weekend but it was
great to see so many people supporting the great cause in the Lloyd Pugsley
Memorial Match, raising money for local junior rugby. Also mention to the
women’s team who have been working hard in the last few months to
develop girls’ rugby at the club, running a series of promotional events and
preparing to host taster sessions, it is all part and parcel of making sure we
continue to progress and improve for the future across all elements of the
Enjoy the match
Allan and Paul
Good afternoon and welcome to Twist Lane for our Ladbrokes Challenge Cup third round
game against West Hull in what is sure to be a cracker of a cup tie between two of the big
guns in the amateur game. I'm sure West Hull will agree that a game like this is perfect
preparation for the start of the NCL next weekend, having good competitive games
against sides at the same level is always ideal in the lead up to the season rather than
playing in friendlies where the opposition aren't as good and lacks intensity or playing a
semi-professional side in the Cup and getting a drubbing or doing well and fading late on.
Games against higher opposition always take it out of you no matter who you play and we
have found at Miners after playing pro sides that we always seem to be flat the week
after, the last thing we want going into the opening weekend of the league season,
especially when it's a battle of the borough home fixture against Wigan St Pats.
Normally in the third round you expect to be drawn against a professional side but with
the rules being changed this year to an open draw it gives the amateurs who have been
paired together a great chance of making the fourth round to face one of the big boys
such as Leigh Centurions and Bradford Bulls. For the sides that do make it through it also
helps their club financially with the prize money starting to creep up. Looking at our draw I
don't think we could have had any better amateur side coming to Twist Lane this
afternoon, for me West Hull are the main force at the moment in the NCL and to win
everything on offer last year was some achievement. They have started the year again by
winning silverware in the Steve Prescott Charity Shield and with the squad they have got
at present they will be confident of defending their trophies again this year and I'm sure
they will be looking to dominate the amateur game like they did in the late 1990s and
early 2000s.
On to us and it's been a good tough pre-season with plenty numbers down at training, we
have been working our training around Blackbrook Royals u-14s thanks to Allan Coleman,
moving training to Monday and Wednesday to fit with them, but now I'm hearing that with
the lighter evenings they are moving their training to Monday and Wednesdays so we're
being moved to Tuesday and Thursdays to again suit them!
There are a good few new lads in the squad this year and it's good to see plenty of
competition for places with lads wanting to be in the matchday seventeen. They include
Harry Gagen who sports a Josh Charnley haircut on the wing, Connor Ratcliffe from
Wigan St Judes , who is a lot more interesting than our last Judes recruit Tommy
Parkinson! Brad Hargreaves a centre/second row comes down having played previously
at Salford, along with Bud Skinkis who returns to the club after a three year spell in
athletics. Three young lads have come up from the u18s in Mark Nicholson who proposes
to his girlfriend at least a couple of times a month only to be rejected, along with Ben
Grimshaw & Charles Tyson who think fighting has only just been invented! Grimshaw
known for urinating out of his loft conversion window and Tyson who has a very unusual
dress sense!
Back to Allan Coleman he nearly had to give Jonny Youds a good hiding last Saturday
after Youdsy, who can’t handle his ale and has had a few silver medals in his time (Mark
Nicholson) being one of them, started having a drunken rant at future father in law Alan
Riding, Coleman stepping in telling Jonny to calm down only to be met with a barrage of
abuse from Youds who slammed his pint on the table. Coleman responding with a few
home truths to see Jonny storm out of the club with his tail between his legs wearing his
awful bubble coat that was last in fashion in the 90s and shouting "I'm done with this club
you will never find a better fullback than me" finishing his rant looking at Coleman through
the window and sticking up his fingers!!! Since then Jonny has repeatedly apologised to
Allan to try and keep hold of his number 1 jersey and I'm told from a very good source
(not Heinz or HP) that he has offered to do any electrical work for FREE in the
foreseeable future at the Coleman household instead of Tommy Parkinson who has had
to do it since moving from St Judes last year so he could be in the team!
Good luck to the u18s tomorrow and enjoy today's game
Tel No : - 01942 683900
[email protected]
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Training office
6 Merchants Crescent,
Nr Warrington WA3 2JZ
Tel:- 01942 722531 –
07989 080998
[email protected]
In another new feature for 2015, each week we’ll be
getting to know some of our most dedicated supporters.
This week it’s Allan Banks
So when did you first start watching Miners Allan? My
first game was the final home game of the 1995/96 season. I
think Beverley were the visitors, Miners won and it poured
down with rain.
What would you pick out as the highlights from your
time supporting the club? I cannot decide between beating
Bramley at Headingley in 1999 in the Challenge Cup or
beating Wath Brow in the Grand Final at Orrell in 2005.
Who has been your all-time favourite Miners player?
Easy one – Mick Warburton at stand-off. Very close seconds
in alphabetic order would be Scott O'Brien at half-back,
Darren Pilkington at full-back and Peter Sharpe at full-back.
What would you say is the best thing about supporting
Miners? Entertainment is guaranteed and nothing is ever
certain until the final whistle!
And what would you change about the club if you
could? Two things actually, firstly better cover for protection
from the rain and secondly I wish the ball would get to the
wingers more often.
Finally, what are your hopes for Miners for 2015? Just as
much entertainment as the last 20 years and no serious
injury to any player.
For more details or to make a booking contact Mark or Una on
01942 671782 / 672984
Miners – Muir, Gagen, Thomason, Grimes (T), Skinkis (2T), Doyle, O’Brien (T, 3G),
Astley, Farrimond, Kay, Parkinson, Jackson, Rowlands – Ratcliffe (T), Bowers,
Hargreaves, Jones
Walney – Backhouse, Devereux, Staffieri (T), Larkin (T), Pearce (T), Nicholls,
Morrow, Warne, Elliott, McKinley (G), Darby, Holmes, Finch – Vial (T), Furness,
Lockhart, McBain
The Miners Rangers women’s team have launched a promotional
campaign aimed at getting more women and girls involved in
rugby league at the club. With the support of incoming coach Cliff
Tamou, and alongside the Leigh Centurions Community
Foundation, the ladies are planning a series of taster sessions,
school festivals and promotional awareness-raising events over
the coming weeks and months with a view to not only increasing
the numbers of women playing at open age but also promoting
girls’ rugby at junior level. For more information or to get involved
at a taster session just contact the club or follow the ladies on
Twitter and facebook.
Last Sunday the team attended the Leigh Centurions v London
Broncos fixture at the Sports Village, giving out leaflets and
spreading the word to the 4,500 strong crowd despite the filthy
weather conditions.
The team kick off their campaign next Sunday 15th with a trip to
Brighouse Rangers.
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We provide the personal attention that you would expect from a
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We service over 14000 clients’ premises throughout the UK. Food
related industries are the prime clients however pests will take
advantage of any situation and therefore all types of premises
need protection. These include Shopping Centres, Airports, food,
processors, Bakers’ warehouses offices etc
For any enquiries or to contact Pestokill
East Lancs Road
08700 660 999
Email – [email protected]
Supporting Leigh Miners Rangers
Amber and Black
Paul Whitworth and
Allan Coleman
Jimmy MUIR
Darryl KAY
Martin GRAY
Right Wing
Right Centre
Left Centre
Left Wing
Open Side Prop
Blind Side Prop
Green and Gold
Mark Hewitt
Callum KING
Ashley SHAW
Referee – Jack Smith
Touch Judges – Denton Arnold and Craig Smith
Match Commissioner – Bob Connolly
Jonny Youds – Sponsored by Paul McCarthy Photography
Shaun Dowie – Sponsored by the Balmer Family
Martin Gray – Sponsored by Roy Walls
Danny Jackson – Sponsored by Mick Fairhurst
Elsewhere Today
Elland v Featherstone Lions
Two of last season’s promotion winners in the
NCL meet at Rochdale Road and whilst a
division still separates Elland and their visitors
it is the lower-ranked Lions who will be hot favourites after their run to the
Conference Trophy semi-finals last term, coupled with their scalping of Siddal in
the last round of this competition.
Wath Brow Hornets v Newcastle Thunder
Brow host the rebranded Thunder at Red Beck Road and perhaps this tie has
the whiff of an upset about it although Stanley Gene’s Tynesiders will be welldrilled and packed with his World Cup star compatriots including Jason Tali,
Charlie Wabo and Mark Mexico (below left). Whilst the Kumul contingent might
find early spring at the Brow somewhat of a culture shock, the ageless Ryan
MacDonald, who remarkably played for Bramley in Miners’ cup shock win back
in 1999, will feel right at home in his native Cumbria.
Oulton Raiders v Normanton Knights
Oulton have continued their tremendous 2014 form into the current campaign,
albeit with favourable draws in the first two rounds, and local rivals Normanton
Knights will do well to inflict a rare defeat on their hosts. As Oulton swept to the
Division One title, the Knights faltered to finish fifth, but in their two meetings
last term (below, centre) they pushed the Raiders close. It won’t be a formality
for Oulton, but they should be too strong for their visitors.
Kells v Rochdale Hornets
Whitehaven’s Recreation Ground hosts this other Cumbrian tie as Kells host
Hornets. Dale have recruited strongly from the amateur game following their
demotion from the Championship, with ex-Miners Ryan Smith amongst their
new faces, and whilst this won’t be as wild a day as we experienced at The Big
Waite last February it will still be a tester for Ian Talbot’s men.
London Skolars v Swinton Lions
An all-League One clash at New River Stadium where Skolars aim to record
only their second-ever win over the Lions. Swinton were generally doughty
opponents in their relegation season last term and with ex-Miners Stuart Littler
(below right) on board have the quality, but pre-season has been largely
forgettable and they could be on the wrong end of the result today.
Playing Tomorrow
North Wales Crusaders v Widnes West Bank
With the Wrexham side’s Simms Cross and Warrington connections this could
be quite a tasty collision at the Glyndŵr University Racecourse. Crusaders will
be strong favourites against the former NCL side West Bank, who returned to
the North West Men’s League in 2013.
Hemel Stags v Oxford
Two slow starters in League One meet at Pennine Way where home
advantage could prove decisive for the Stags. Both sides suffered heavy
defeats in the League One Cup last weekend and in the five previous
meetings Hemel hold a clear advantage, albeit with only a handful of points
between the sides on the majority of occasions.
Oldham v Coventry Bears
These sides meet for the second time in a week and Oldham will be in the
mood to dish out more punishment having inflicted a 42-6 defeat upon the
Bears in what was their first match in the professional ranks. Ex-Miners man
Adam Clay scored twice in that rout, playing on the wing to centre and vicecaptain Sam Gee (below left), another Twist Lane old boy.
Barrow v Keighley Cougars
Two of last season’s relegated Championship contenders meet in the
heavyweight clash of the round. Keighley were perhaps unluckiest to take the
drop as the Championship restructured and they opened with purpose last
weekend to hammer East Leeds in the League One Cup. Barrow’s links to
Leigh Centurions sees another Twist Lane junior, Josh Ward (below right), in
action as a Craven Park loanee today.
South Wales Scorpions v York City Knights
Scorpions were crushed at Rochdale last weekend whilst York racked up 78
at London Skolars and this would seem to be another opportunity for the
Minster City men to pile on the points against one of the League One
University of Gloucestershire All Golds v Skirlaugh
A repeat of the 2013 clash at the same stage of the competition for these two
sides (below centre), with All Golds edging out the Villagers 26-16 at Saltend
two years ago after Skirlaugh had led 16-10 at the break thanks to tries for
Alex Foster, Tom Saltmer and David Fletcher. The Villagers have edged out
Aberdeen and the Navy in the competition thus far but they will find it tough
going at the Prince of Wales Stadium.
Brett Turner (fullback)
After an injury-ravaged
season or so the erstwhile
stand-off returned to the
side at the back end of
2014 and has been
used at fullback this term.
Scott Partis (stand-off)
Significant signing in
2014, the ex-East Hull
man proved pivotal as
Wests swept the board.
Dylan Price (wing)
Youngster who came
in to the side last season
and who has impressed
to cement his place in
the side ever since.
Louis Crowther(scrum
half) Talented youngster
who has been a regular
in the first team squad for
the last year.
Dean Thompson
(back row)
stalwart playing at
loose or the back
row, another of the
stars to have come
through Wests’
junior ranks.
Callum King (centre)
One of the latest products
of the Wests’ youth
supply line, has been
handed his chance by
Mark Hewitt this year.
Scott Howlett (prop)
Former Doncaster and
Hull KR man who has
started the season in
rich form, superseding the
retired James Garmston
Sam Cator (back
row) Joined brother
Lee in making the
move from East to
West Hull last
season, the talented
back-row enjoyed a
fine campaign.
Matt Plummer (centre)
One of the stars of the
last campaign, where he
predominantly featured at
fullback, brings plenty of
pace to the Lions’ side.
Josh Hart (wing)
First choice goalkicker
for the Lions, the winger
came through the junior
ranks at Walter Simpson
Park and has been a key
figure for Wests.
Callum Windley (hooker)
Captain of the side, the
West Hull youth product
has played professionally
at Bradford and Doncaster.
Paul Shaw (prop)
Product of the Wests’
youth set-up who faced
Danny Jones and Adam
Thomason in the 2008
under-18s Grand Final.
Ricky Hough
(loose forward)
New recruit and
former Grand
Finalist with Myton
before signing for
With Lee Walls
A warm welcome is extended to both our own supporters and to the players, officials and
fans of league and cup winning West Hull to Twist Lane for a highly anticipated third round
Ladbrokes Challenge Cup game whereby a potential high profile fourth round tie is the prize
on offer. The game today promises to be a real spectacle with the all-conquering West Hull
looking to progress by overcoming arguably the toughest draw of the round. Obviously, I for
one will be hoping we can put an end to their winning ways!
The Miners today are using the game as an opportunity to thank our loyal sponsors,
supporters, to strengthen new partnerships and also to honour an absolute rugby league
legend and a great of the game.
Today we have invited our key sponsors to join us, namely Welch Mill who have supported
the club for over 25 years, Leigh Cables, an ever present in terms of supporting the club
along with our very own legend John Webster, whose support knows no limits. We also
extend a very warm welcome to Colour Sergeant Carl Ruffley of the Duke of Lancaster 2
Battalion. A very successful pre-season training camp was hosted by the Battalion where
the squad was put through their paces in a training event coordinated by Colour Sergeant
Ruffley. We are very much hoping to strengthen our link with the Battalion whereby more
mutually beneficial joint ventures will be announced during the forthcoming NCL season.
Once again may I thank the Battalion on behalf of the club for their fantastic efforts and
hospitality during the weekend training camp.
We also would like to welcome a Leigh legend to Twist Lane today, a guy that we can thank
for getting us the ‘easy draw’…. Mr Alex Murphy OBE will be guest of honour at the club. I
was intending on waxing lyrical about ‘Murph’ however he needs no introduction in this neck
of the woods. I thank Alex for accepting the invite and hope that he both enjoys the game
and enjoys watching our very own number 7 today…. (no pressure then Scott !)
Finally (I promise) and by no means least, I would like to thank one of our most loyal
supporters, namely Elaine Jones. Elaine not only follows the Miners to virtually every game
we play but works tirelessly in supporting the club in any way she can. It is exceptionally
difficult not to mention others in the same breathe, however, I will be looking to thank all of
our supporters through this column. Any individuals and or companies looking to get
involved in player sponsorship or any other sponsorship / donation no matter what the scale
please contact myself or any of the club officials. Furthermore if anyone has any contacts or
potential leads or new ideas to follow up please pass these on to me.
Enjoy the game…. Come on the MINERS….
Lee Walls
The open draw for the Challenge Cup third round has paired two
amateur sides who have fine pedigrees in the competition, with
Miners crowned Community Club of the Year for their efforts in the
2011 competition and toppling NFP side Bramley in 1999 at
Headingley to book our sole fourth round appearance to date against
Wests’ neighbours Hull KR. Those exploits, commendable though
they are, pale besides our visitors’ record, which saw them set a
benchmark for amateur sides in reaching the fifth round in 1996
having defeated Highfield and York.
A remarkable 2014 saw Wests reinforce their reputation as the top
dogs in the amateur game, sweeping up all four trophies on offer as
wily coach Mark Hewitt and his talented side dominated the NCL in
league and cup. The early weeks of 2015 have seen a slightly newlook side, following the retirement of several long-serving
performers, show they are still a match for anyone, booking their
place here today after seeing off Thatto Heath and Hunslet Warriors
in the first two rounds, beating East Leeds to retain the Steve
Prescott Charity Shield and then pushing semi-professionals North
Wales Crusaders hard in the League One Cup last weekend.
Both sides will view this tie as a great opportunity to earn a crack at
the professional heavyweights in the fourth round, and with the away
team having taken the spoils in our last five meetings here and at
Walter Simpson Park, Hewitt’s Lions will be in confident mood as
they arrive at Twist Lane today.
31st Jan
14th Feb
7th Mar
14th Mar
21st Mar
28th Mar
11th Apr
18th Apr
25th Apr
2nd May
9th May
16th May
23rd May
13th June
20th June
27th June
11th July
18th July
25th July
1st Aug
15th Aug
5th Sep
12th Sep
19th Sep
26th Sep
3rd Oct
Hull Dockers
West Hull
Oulton Raiders
Egremont Rangers
Lock Lane
Hull Dockers
Rochdale Mayfield
Wath Brow Hornets
Wigan St Patricks
East Leeds
Thatto Heath
*Result overturned after Dockers played ineligible player
Home games in capitals
Name = Darryl Kay
Age = 28
Sponsor = Stumpy's Gym
Occupation = Bricklayer
Twitter = Darrylkay10
Favourite Position (playing!) = Prop
Favourite food = homemade lasagne
Favourite drink = Rekorderlig Wild Berries cider
Favourite song = The Courteeners - Not Nineteen Forever
Best trainer at club = Danny Jones - training unbelievably hard this
pre-season trying get rid of his kench, not working though!
Worst trainer at club = Adam Thomason - never stops moaning
Best dressed at club = Myself - style icon!
Worst dressed at club = Tommy Parkinson - favours he gets
dressed in dark
Ambitions for 2015 = stay fit and injury free, win some silverware!
In a new feature for 2015 we look at two memorable matches against our
opponents West Hull
Our man on the inside gives us the real low-down on West Hull
Brett Turner: the most untrustworthy kid ever, been trying to get in the dream
team for nearly a year now #NOCHANCE
Josh Hart: likes his lasses in school uniform got the worst banter ever
Dan Parker: always in the physio room loves a claim
Callum King: a bit of a mongy
Dylan Price: good for knocking teeth out apart from that got nowt about him
Ian Kerman: best looking player in the West Hull team, leader of the dream
Scott Partis: ex-East Hull playmaker, probably the main reason East Hull
folded #noshame
Scott Howlett: can’t handle the sister jokes very well
Callum Windley: gets man of match nearly every week think his old man picks
Lee Cator: another ex-East Hull player who sent them down
Sam Cator: 3rd best looking player in the West Hull team got a lovely bum
bag on him member of the dream team
Ricky Hough: played for every Hull team, loves a trackie
Dean Thompson: known as the Anlaby Road strangler
Matty Plummer: hands like cow’s tits
Ryan Steen: got his head on the wrong way round
Tom Radley: ugliest player in NCL
Louis Crowther : 2nd best looking in the West Hull team, member of the
dream team
Paul Shaw: greediest man ever, looks like Butch Dingle
Ash Shaw: first season in first team got a nice keg on him
Lee Roberts: same gags week in week out, nickname baggy neck
Aidan Morton: nickname the Titty Man as he’s known for buying birds fake
breasts then gets sacked off a few weeks later #ollithebutcher
Mark Hewitt: always getting choked out by James Garmston on a night out 68
and 1
Yo Windley (right): loves a selfie
We go back just as far as last July to recall a famous victory at Walter
Simpson Park, our third in succession at what had long been a graveyard
for Miners, and Wests’ only home defeat in what turned out to be a
phenomenal season for the Lions. On a humid afternoon Miners opened
the scoring through Danny Jackson and extended the lead when Shaun
Dowie nipped in after Wests spilled a Jimmy Muir bomb, Jonny Youds with
one conversion. The home side reduced arrears when Dan Parker scored
a try converted by Ian Kerman and minutes into the second half were back
on terms when Sam Cator scored off Kerman’s clever kick in-goal.
However Miners restored the lead which they wouldn’t relinquish when
Tommy Parkinson charged up the middle and offloaded for Youds to finish
off before Matty Meaden dived over from close range to make it a twoscore lead. In the closing stages the outstanding Parkinson drove over
from close range to seal the victory, 28-10.
It was but a minor blip for Wests though as they completed a clean sweep
of trophies by claiming the League Leaders, Challenge Trophy and Grand
Final crowns to add to the Charity Shield which they had won against
ourselves in pre-season.
It’s fair to say we are quite spoiled for choice in this category, but one of our
heaviest home defeats of all time stands out as a particular lowlight. 8
September 2001 saw the NCL Premier Division begin to take shape following the
busy early rounds of fixtures and defending champions West Hull arrived in
familiar form to the top of the table. Miners were destined to have a great season
ourselves but this was a black day as Wests rattled up a 49-8 mauling. Four
players scored braces for the Lions – Stuart Leake, Glyn Jones, Terry Lynn and
Brian Newby, with Carl Moore scoring the other try. Miners had scant consolation
with James Arkwright our sole tryscorer and, in a more evenly-contested first
half, Steve Flannery and Mark Hudspith adding goals before Wests ran riot after
the interval.
For the record, the two teams were :Miners – James Arkwright, Steve Clarke, Howard Newton, Mark Sarsfield, Craig
Graham, Mick Warburton, Sean Phoenix, Danny Flannery, Roy Stott, Mick
Leach, Chris Flynn, Steve Flannery, Craig Wilson Subs – Mark Hudspith, Shane
Hindley, Ian Wilcox, Jon Light
Wests – Lee Moreton, Stuart Leake, Carl Moore, Adam Sissons, Glyn Jones,
Chris Verity, Terry Lynn, Lee Horsfield, Pete Stephenson, Gavin Last, Scott
Fletcher, Brian Newby, Wayne Harris Subs – David Roe, Paul Watts, Paul
Roberts, Mark Cooke
To add to the club’s woes James Arkwright suffered what proved to be a careerending injury in this game.
Remarkably given this thrashing the two sides went on to meet in the inaugural
Grand Final at Spotland come the end of the season.