Here at TLCRF80mins, we love the Law Cup.
It'll be a game of unknown quantities on Sunday as Hornets and Oldham's overhauled squads tune-up in preparation for what both Ian Talbot and Scott Naylor know is a shit-or-bust season for both clubs. With two promotion places available - and N. Wales Crusaders chucking money around like it's going out of fashion - it's going to be an almighty kick, bollock and scramble all the way to September as our two venerable clubs battle to get out of the 'League of Slow Death™' and back onto the Rugby League map.
Having won the annual challenge against the Town Team comfortably, Ian Talbot shuffled his combinations in an inter-squad hit-out at Hopwood Hall last weekend, giving the U20's a chance to play themselves into first team contention.
Hornets 2013 squad is:
1. Wayne English 2. Gaz Langley 3. Owen Livesey 4. Tony Stewart 5. Dave Sutton
6. Paul Crook 7. Steven Roper 8. John Cookson 9. Alex McClurg 10. Warren Thompson
11. Chris Baines 12. Dayne Donoghue 13. Jordan Case 14. Alex Trumper 15. Benji Lloyd
16. Danny Davies 17. Martin Waring 18. Gareth Frodsham 19. Andy Ainscough
20. Joe Bate 21. John Walker 22. Mike Ratu 23. Dave Hull 24. Mark Goodman
25. Simon Atherton 26. Dave Llewellyn 27. Jayden Sandford 33. Lewis Sheridan
34. Fraser Jones Lake 35. Ryan Brown 36. Andy Unsworth 37. Barry Clarke
38. Jack Knowles 39. Liam Whalley 40. Will Chadwick
Oldham come into Sunday's game hot on the heels of a decent win over Salford's U19's, but it'll be a very different team to the one we saw last year. Only six players from last year's squad survive (the majority of whom seem to have baled to Oxford to play for Tony Benson). The six are Neil Roden, Jamie Dallimore, Liam Gilchrist, Jason Boults, Michael Ward and David Cookson.
But Oldham will be without Centre Cookson for Sunday's fixture as he's batting out a six-month suspension following an inadvertent use of Methylhexaneamine, a Specified Substance on the WADA Prohibited List which crops up in some energy drinks. His suspension expires on February 28.
Scott Naylor's squad contains three former Hornets in Dale Bloomfield, Andy Hobson and Danny Samuel - which should give the game a little extra spice. More interstingly, they've also signed Callum Marriott, son of ex-Hornet legend Karl Marriott.
Latest Oldham first team squad we have is:
Mo Agoro Dale Bloomfield Jason Boults David Cookson Josh Crowley Jamie Dallimore
Adam Files Sam Gee Liam Gilchrist Mark Hobson Kenny Hughes Phil Joy Danny Langtree Richard Lepori Callum Marriott Chis Murphy Steven Nield Lewis Palfrey Neil Roden Danny Samuel Liam Thompson Chris Tyrer Michael Ward
Officials for Sunday are: Referee: P Brooke Touch Judges: D McNeice and I Scott
Hornets will go into Sunday's clash without Wayne English and Paul Crook, who both have other commitments. Whilst this provides an opportunity for other squad players, Ian Talbot is said to be ready to draft in dual registration players from St Helens.