Naylor optimistic Oldham’s spirit can beat Leigh

Oldham coach Scott Naylor is taking the positives from his team’s performance in their 70-10 defeat to Warrington in the Challenge Cup last weekend.

Despite the thrashing, Naylor was pleased with the spirit his team showed.

“The scoreline was unfortunate. It shows you what a Super League team can do to you in 50 minutes,” he said.

“We were very good at the start and then, like against Leigh earlier in the season, we let a couple of back-to-back tries in just before half-time, which doesn’t help.

“In the second half Warrington were just in a completely different league altogether. They did a job and you’ve just got to congratulate them but my lads had a real dig, it’s a pity the scoreline ended up like it did.

“We only had 16 fit lads with just two props, and there was a lot of adversity in the changing room last weekend. This weekend there is none. We’ve got a lot of people back, dual-registration available and people who were Cup-tied last week.

“I’ve probably got one of the strongest squads I’ve had to choose from for a long time. We’re looking forward to Sunday’s game; we’re a different team than when we played them at the beginning of the season.

“We were just enthusiastic at the beginning but we’re different now, we’re enthusiastic but we also believe in ourselves a lot more. We know we can win games in the Championship and I think we are stronger.”

Leigh Centurions had a week off, and coach Neil Jukes was watching Oldham’s cup tie closely.

“We are very respectful of Oldham,” he said.

“Not only for their outstanding performance in winning at Hull KR, but the way they played superbly for 35 minutes against Warrington and the results they have had in the Championship since gaining promotion last year.

“They are a hungry team and we will have to be very good to get a positive result from the game as they don’t give you many opportunities.”

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