Let’s be honest, unless you were around to see Haven beat Australia in the 50s or the touring Kiwis a decade later, which rules out the vast majority of us, the greatest game you’ll have seen at the Recreation Ground is the stunning comeback win over Castleford in 2005, to land a place in that season’s Grand Final.

But I’ve gone back a couple of seasons further to a game that stands out for me.

Haven 20, Oldham 17

Sunday July 21, 2002

This was a game remembered for an after-the-hooter winning try, scored at the Kells End, with Haven going the full length of the field.

They snatched victory from the jaws of defeat, having earlier surrendered a commanding lead in a manner which was so typically, frustratingly, Haven.

This was a Whitehaven team, under the guidance of Paul Cullen, who were capable of greatness. We were the only team that season to take any points off runway winners Huddersfield, drawing 12 all at the Recre.

The all conquering Giants aside, at times we looked capable of being the best of the rest. Maybe we could have been, had it not been for what was called, at the time, Pelican Garage syndrome — we seemed to forget what to do when the team bus went past the garage on the way out of town!

Going into this game we’d lost three in a row — all away — at Huddersfield, Barrow and Leigh. But at home we were pretty good, and for the first hour it looked like it was going to be a routine home win.

An early Warren Stevens try, made good by Stephen Kirkbride, had us ahead, before Spencer Miller scored to make it 10-0. Oldham got back into it just before half time, but when Aaron Lester scored, and Kirkbride converted, we were 16-6 up and cruising.

Then, as the clock passed 65 minutes, Oldham came hard, scoring through Joey Hayes and then, on 70 minutes, through John Goddard. Gareth Barber’s conversion made it 16 apiece, but the visitors, featuring a youthful Lee Doran, had the momentum.

When Neil Roden landed a drop goal in the 78th minute to put the visitors ahead for the first time, the disappointment was palpable.

Several of the 1,000 strong crowd started to walk out — only to come running back in through the gates as those remaining in the ground screamed in delight seconds later.

I can’t remember exactly how the ball found its way wide to a young Rob Jackson, Haven’s plucky loanee, playing that day in the right centre.

What I do remember is that once Jackson found clear space and pinned his head back, there was nobody stopping him.

As he streaked along the Popular Side and touched down, he started an affinity with the club which would prove be vital in getting him back on a permanent basis in years to come.

The outcome of Haven’s seven remaining games that season was predictable; won three at home, and lost four away, to finish seventh.

Cullen answered Warrington’s call, but he left some great foundations in place for the next permanent coach, a certain Steve McCormack.