THERE was plenty of cup cheer at the Vestacare Stadium when Oldham’s players learned during training the club had been drawn at home in both the fourth round of the Coral Challenge Cup and the first round of the new 1895 Cup.

“We couldn’t ask for much more than home ties in both competitions,” said chairman Chris Hamilton.

Championship side Widnes Vikings visit Oldham in the Challenge Cup on the weekend of March 30-31, while Whitehaven head south in the 1895 Cup in May.

“Despite recent financial problems Widnes are still a relatively big club,” added Hamilton. “They were in Super League last season and they still have a good fan base, as was evident when they rallied round during the club’s recent troubles.”

In their last home game, the first after they were saved from liquidation by a takeover, they beat Featherstone Rovers 44-22 in front of a crowd of 5,782.

Of the game against Whitehaven in the 1895 Cup, he said: “There were some teams that, for various reasons, we didn’t fancy playing away from home so we were really pleased to be first out of the hat in this competition.

“We’ve already beaten Whitehaven at home in the league this season, but that will make them determined to balance things up.”

Roughyeds have a free weekend before returning to Betfred League 1 action on March 24, when London Skolars are the visitors. It will be a big community day with the launch of the new junior club ‘Roary’s Pride’ and an invitation to all local schools involved in ‘The Oldham Pledge’ scheme.

Scrum-half Dave Hewitt, meanwhile, has learned that in the first three rounds of Betfred League 1 he has kicked more goals, 14, and scored more points, 36, than any other player in the division.

Newcastle’s Liam Finn, with 13 and 30 respectively, is his nearest challenger.

Hunslet’s Gareth Potts, with four, is leading league try scorer, followed by a clutch of players on three, including Oldham’s Zack McComb and Ritchie Hawkyard.