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Championships news - Olstrum and Smith named Players of the Week

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Loose forwards Karl Olstrum and Jono Smith have taken the honours as Players of the Week after producing outstanding individual displays on Sunday.

Olstrum was a key part of Workington Town’s 32-18 win over Hunslet Hawks, while Smith excelled as North Wales Crusaders overcame Rochdale Hornets 35-18.

Both players recorded the maximum five points towards their respective competition’s Player of the Year award at the end of the season.

Every week each coach in the Kingstone Press Championship and Championship One is contacted to help compile the awards.


Championship Player of the Week – Karl Olstrum (Workington Town)

Workington coach Gary Charlton hailed Karl Olstrum’s performance in Town’s 32-18 win over Hunslet Hawks. Olstrum scored one try and dictated Workington’s play throughout.

Charlton said: “It was the best game Karl’s played for Workington Town by a long way.

“His work rate is phenomenal. He’ll put in 50 tackles and take the ball up 20 to 30 times. On top of that he was bursting the line and scored a beautiful try that not many people could score.”

Charlton added: “We defended really well, and that’s how you win games in this division. It was a very pleasing performance all round.”


Championship One Player of the Week - Jono Smith (North Wales Crusaders)

North Wales loose forward Jono Smith was outstanding as the Crusaders maintained their 100 per cent start to the season by winning 35-18 at Rochdale.

Smith, who scored a first-half try, earned huge praise from Crusaders coach Clive Griffiths.

Griffiths said: “Jono was great in attack and defence. Rochdale tried to tire him out by spotting him, but every time they tried it they got put on their backsides, and every time he got the ball he did something.

“He’s more vocal this year and he’s one of our senior men. When he speaks, everybody listens. He’s got a good rugby brain and he’s a great contributor to our team.”


Try of the Week – Benn Hardcastle (Gateshead Thunder)

Benn Hardcastle put the finishing touches on a sweeping move that saw Gateshead Thunder claim their sixth try in a 30-10 win over Gloucestershire All Golds.

Thunder coach Kevin Neighbour said: “It was the last tackle and we put on a bit of good work down the short side.

“There were two or three excellent passes before Josh Neilson went through, and he found Benn in support.”

Neighbour added: “We knew there was an opportunity to get our first win if we did everything right, and that’s what we did. A lot of lads played fantastically well and they got what they deserved.”


Performance of the Week – Leigh Centurions

Leigh Centurions claim the Premier Sports Performance of the Week award for the second week running after demolishing York City Knights 52-4 at the Huntington Stadium.

The Knights had an impressive home record prior to Sunday’s match, but nine-try Leigh left the hosts shell-shocked. Ryan Brierley scored a hat-trick, and was joined in the Premier Sports Championship Team of the Week by Bob Beswick and Tommy Goulden.

Centurions coach Paul Rowley, whose side beat Batley 20-0 eight days ago, said: “We’ve hit a good bit of form and we’re really pleased with it, especially our defence, which was pretty brutal again. It’s been a good concerted effort.”


Championship Team of the Week

  1. Richie Hawkyard (Swinton Lions)
  2. Wayne Reittie (Halifax)
  3. Menzie Yere (Sheffield Eagles)
  4. Danny Cowling (Doncaster)
  5. Stuart Sanderson (Doncaster)
  6. Peter Lupton (Workington Town)
  7. Ryan Brierley (Leigh Centurions)
  8. Anthony England (Featherstone Rovers)
  9. Bob Beswick (Leigh Centurions)
  10. Steve Crossley (Featherstone Rovers)
  11. Frankie Mariano (Featherstone Rovers)
  12. Tommy Goulden (Leigh Centurions)
  13. Karl Olstrum (Workington Town)

Championship Player of the Week

5 points – Karl Olstrum (Workington Town)

4 points – Bob Beswick (Leigh Centurions)

3 points – Richie Hawkyard (Swinton Lions)

2 points – Wayne Reittie (Halifax)

1 point – Menzie Yere (Sheffield Eagles)


Championship Player of the Year Table

1. Mitchell Stringer (13 points)

2. Aaron Brown (9 points)

3. Paul Handforth (8 points)

Miles Greenwood (8 points)

4. Steve Crossley (7 points)

Peter Green (7 points)

Kyle Briggs (7 points)

Scott Leatherbarrow (7 points)

9. Dave Houghton (6 points)

Callum Phillips (6 points)

11.  Scott Murrell (5 points)

Jack Lee (5 points)

Simon Finnigan (5 points)

Luke Helliwell (5 points)

Kurt Haggerty (5 points)

Rob Parker (5 points)

Stuart Littler (5 points)

Karl Olstrum (5 points)

19. Lee Waterman (4 points)

Sean Penkywicz (4 points)

Tom Hemingway (4 points)

Ian Hardman (4 points)

Bob Beswick (4 points)

24. Jack Bussey (3 points)

Liam Finn (3 points)

Dominic Brambani (3 points)

Liam Harrison (3 points)

Keegan Hirst (3 points)

Cain Southernwood (3 points)

Jarrad Stack (3 points)

Richie Hawkyard (3 points)

32. Anthony Thackeray (2 points)

Gregg McNally (2 points)

James Lockwood (2 points)

Danny Jones (2 points)

Wayne Reittie (2 points)

37. Steve Tyrer (1 point)

Ryan Fieldhouse (1 point)

Johnny Campbell (1 point)

Alex Bretherton (1 point)

Matt Nicholson (1 point)

Jessie Joe Parker (1 point)

Scott McAvoy (1 point)

Menzie Yere (1 point)


Championship One Team of the Week

  1. Jonny Leather (Oxford)
  2. Dalton Grant (South Wales Scorpions)
  3. Danny Halliwell (Oxford)
  4. Sean Morris (Oxford)
  5. Rob Massam (North Wales Crusaders)
  6. Chris Parker (Gateshead Thunder)
  7. Benn Hardcastle (Gateshead Thunder)
  8. Jason Payne (Gateshead Thunder)
  9. Gareth Honor (Hemel Stags)
  10. Tyla Hepi (Gloucestershire All Golds)
  11. Mike Worrincy (London Skolars)
  12. Aaron Ollett (Gateshead Thunder)
  13. Jono Smith (North Wales Crusaders)

Championship One Player of the Week

5 points – Jono Smith (North Wales Crusaders)

4 points – Aaron Ollett (Gateshead Thunder)

3 points – Mike Worrincy (London Skolars)

2 points – Sean Morris (Oxford)

1 point – Ben Hardcastle (Gateshead Thunder)


Championship One Player of the Year

Hemel’s Mike Bishay continues to lead the Player of the Year rankings, but Oxford centre Sean Morris has narrowed the gap to one point after starring in his side’s 23-22 win over the Stags.

1. Mike Bishay (8 points)

2. Sean Morris (7 points)

3. Andy Moulsdale (6 points)

4. Jono Smith (5 points)

5. Gary Middlehurst (4 points)

Valu Bentley (4 points)

Jack Murphy (4 points)

Aaron Ollett (4 points)

9. Stuart Reardon (3 points)

Tyla Hepi (3 points)

Mike Worrincy (3 points)

12. Jason Payne (2 points)

Steve Roper (2 points)

Craig White (2 points)

Danny Langtree (2 points)

16. Benn Hardcastle (1 point)



Nathan Clarke

Media Executive

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