Neil Roden named new Oldham skipper

Oldham have appointed experienced stand-off Neil Roden as their captain for the 2011 season.

The Wigan-born playmaker replaces his cousin Martin Roden, who becomes joint vice-captain alongside Marcus St Hilaire as well as the club’s assistant coach and conditioner.

Head coach Tony Benson explained that increased competition for the hooker position contributed to his decision, with Martin Roden one of four hookers on the club’s books.

“As a general rule we’ll play two hookers in each match. At any given time it will be the two ‘form’ hookers who get the shirts that week,” said head coach Tony Benson.

“There’s a lot of competition for those two spots. At best a hooker is going to get the equivalent of no more than half a game because of our substitution policy.

“You can expect Neil Roden to get loads more game time than that if he stays clear of injury, so it was logical to ask Neil to lead the side providing he ticked every other box, which he certainly did.

“I’ve spoken to Martin about this, obviously. He fully understands and appreciates my thinking behind the change, yet he is more than happy to have a voice as vice-captain and to share that role with Junior (Marcus St Hilaire).”

Neil Roden has made 250 appearances for Oldham and is the club’s longest serving player and record try scorer.

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