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29 June 2019

The Lions race local rivals Rochdale Hornets in round 19 of the Betfred Championship. Here’s the latest preview…

Swinton Lions are on the road to face local rivals Rochdale Hornets, with the new venue of neighbours Rochdale Mayfield’s confirmed as the hosting ground. 

A crucial fixture will see the Lions take on Matt Calland’s Rochdale Hornets in the Betfred Championship, with Swinton aiming to look up the table.

Here’s everything you need to know ahead of the clash…


Stuart Littler’s side currently sit 11th in the Championship table and most recently suffered defeat to high-flying York City Knights at Heywood Road after a slow start to the fixture.

James Fords’ side claimed a 26-12 victory, whilst Matty Ashton crossed for a four-pointer for Swinton and Luke Waterworth crossed for his 50th point for the club.

The Lions have three wins in their last league fixtures and are aiming to look up the table, including a victory over second-place Toulouse Olympique in the South of France.

Rochdale currently sit at the foot of the table, with one win throughout the 2019 season against Barrow Raiders in round five.

The Hornets have signed a variety of local players to strengthen their side as well as the signings of former Lion Daley Williams, whilst Oscar Thomas also represents the side on loan from Swinton.


With the rivalry dating back to 1871, Rochdale are the oldest opponents in the history of the Lions.

This year, the sides have met twice so far, with Littler’s side claiming the points on both occasions.

Swinton and Rochdale faced in the Good Friday derby, with the Lions claiming the league-points after an impressive start at Heywood Road which saw Mike Butt cross for a first-half hat-trick inside 25-minutes.

Teammates Oscar Thomas, Liam Forsyth and Gavin Bennion also crossed for four-pointers, whilst Butt made it four in the second half, with over 800 in attendance to watch the thrilling Championship derby clash.

The two later met at Blackpool’s Summer Bash in the second Championship game of the action-packed weekend at Bloomfield Road.

Swinton found themselves 24-10 down at the half-time break, but a thrilling second-half comeback saw the team claim a 40-30 victory in front of a dedicated amount of travelling followers inside the ground.

Frankie Halton fended off four defenders to score his first try for the club, whilst Mike Butt, Matty Ashton, Rhodri Lloyd, Jack Hansen, Rob Fairclough and Liam Pailsey also crossed the whitewash.


Rochdale Mayfield has been the confirmed ground for the tie this weekend.

The Rugby Football League has granted dispensation and approved the use of the stadium, on Steve Gartland Way in Castleton (postcode OL11 3AG), after it was confirmed that the Crown Oil Arena was unavailable.

Rochdale Hornets have pointed to delays in the remedial work to the pitch at the Crown Oil Arena have made the surface unplayable.

Admission prices for the match, which will be on a cash only gate, will be reduced to £15 for adults, £10 concessions and free for under-16s.


LIONS SQUAD TO FACE HORNETS: Ashton, Bennion, Brickhill, Butt, Byrne, Fairclough, Gray, Halton, Hansen, Hatton, P.Jones, Kenga, Kibula, Lepori, Lloyd, Moore, Mullen, Waterworth, Wells.



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