Workington sack Rotheram

James Gordon

Ex-players Martin Oglanby and Gary Charlton having taken over at Workington following the sacking of Dave Rotheram.

Town have struggled all season and find themselves languishing near the bottom of Championship 1 and have now parted company with former Whitehaven coach Rotheram.

Rotheram remained in charge for the 42-20 defeat against York on Sunday but Oglanby and Charlton will take charge for the remaining five games of the season.

Chairman Dave Bowden said: “This is something we’ve been working on at the club for some time.  Dave Rotheram and I have openly discussed where we both see our respective futures heading and we are agreed this is a logical step.

“It will enable the new coaching team to have a real look at the set up and more importantly give them the authority to begin recruitment now as we move into the final games and to prepare for next season.”

“We have followed both Martin and Gary with interest. In discussions it is clear to see how well they work together, they have done so as joint county coaches, with both recognising each others strengths.  I think we all agree it is time for them to move to the next level and we are delighted to give Martin and Gary that opportunity.”

Bowden praised Rotheram despite Town’s indifferent form under his guidance.

He said: “Of course results haven’t gone anywhere near expectation, but in fairness there isn’t a club in any league would not be suffering if it removed 6 key players from its squad. Dave has never been anything less than professional and supportive in difficult circumstances and his work behind the scenes has left us a legacy to build upon”.  “I know he has some interesting propositions in the pipeline and we don’t want to stand in the way of those possibilities.

Martin Oglanby joined Workington as a professional in 1990 after returning from the Great Britain Barla tour of Samoa. With Ray Ashton as coach it was the beginning of a renaissance in Town’s fortunes. He played in the Premiership Finals in 1993 and in 1994 under Peter Walsh, forming a close friendship that exists to this day.

He won the coveted Man of Steel Trophy in 1994 before a shoulder injury prevented him from playing for Town in the first Super League Season. He has coached at Aspatria, Glasson and Maryport as well as the County side winning the Championship in 2008. At national level he was the assistant coach of the Great Britain Under 21 team in 2008 and has just returned from the Ukraine as assistant coach of the GB U’23 side.

Oglanby said: “It’s a great honour to coach this club and I grabbed it with both hands. Of course it is a huge challenge but we are looking forward to getting started and our first training sessions.”

Gary Charlton, was a product of the Kells club right through to Under 19’s where he eventually played for Barla Great Britain under 19’s.    He started his pro career at 20 years old with Australian side Gold Coast Giants. After a stint at Hull K.R. he played for Carlisle, Whitehaven and Barrow before finishing his career at Town. He has also coached at amateur level with Egremont before also coaching at National level with the BARLA U 21’s. He has just returned from the BARLA open age tour of the South Pacific. He follows in the footsteps of his father Paul, a true rugby league legend as coach of Town.

He said: “It really is the next progression for both Martin and I, we will give local players the opportunity to play professional rugby league. I suppose it is true that although we have a great partnership we are very different. Martin is more of a thinker and I suspect I’ll be more of a motivator. We have built a good understanding of what’s needed over the years and we agree on how a team should play the game and conduct itself. I’m sure we can get the effort and style of play that will encourage the fans to come back.”

Workington face Keighley at Derwent Park on Sunday.