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Saturday, 04 July 2015

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Barrow Raiders hang on to beat BARLA with pictures and video highlights

  • Barrow Raiders v BARLA GB Video Highlights Click Here



A KURT Haggerty hat-trick saved Barrow from an embarrassing loss against a BARLA Great Britain side who belied their amateur status to show up the professionals.

It was close to being a second defeat in as many weeks for the home side and, had they suffered a reversal, there could have been few complaints from the Raiders players.

They were given a torrid time by Paul Crarey’s amateur boys, who had more ideas and better execution, only denied victory by Haggerty’s scoring effort.

Haggerty, lining up against two men he coaches at amateur side Pilkington Recs – Ryan Rogers and Danny Lynch – was determined not be come out second best and he and Sean Casey were the standout men for a Barrow side which otherwise far from impressed.

It was immediately evident Raiders had a much better long kicking game with Casey in their half-backs.

The young Ireland international, the best player in blue and white on the afternoon, mastered the conditions within minutes, putting high swirling kicks up to test BARLA full-back Ryan Rogers and producing equally impressive boots along the ground that were stopping within inches of the try line or touchline.

But BARLA had their own kicking king in the shape of Ryan Smith, who tested Dean McGilvray at every opportunity, putting the full-back under pressure and attempting the exploit the weaknesses seen at times in his game last week.

The sides went blow for blow without making any inroads, Liam Harrison carving the best opening on the left but seeing his inside pass to Max Wiper go to ground.

The amateurs also had men capable of making holes, with Adam Thomason making a good break through, before Mike Backhouse chased down his kick through before the BARLA side could reach it and take advantage.

It was Crarey’s side who looked the better outfit throughout the middle of the first half and Ryan Smith broke through the middle of the park.

One-on-one with McGilvray, who had been growing in confidence, he was half-tackled but still managed an offload to Millom’s Marcus O’Brien, who was left cursing the slippery conditions as he slipped with the line in sight.

There was almost half-an-hour on the clock by the time the deadlock was finally broken.

For once, Raiders spread play with speed and direction, taking the ball from wide, left to the right, where McGilvray spotted a gap and went through it.

He reached the line but a swarm of tacklers surrounded him, only to leave the option for an offload, taken gratefully and pounced on by Haggerty, who finished the job.

A chance for an immediate second came and went as Dan Toal could not quite reach the line off Liam Campbell’s neat pass, before the amateurs levelled.

It came off the back of several players hacking the ball on, Thomason and O’Brien among them, before Ryan Smith went past McGilvray and dived on the ball as it went over the line.

Chris Larkin was almost the next man on the scoresheet as he reacted quickest to Rogers spilling a Casey kick and scooped up the loose ball.

The centre headed for the posts, but was halted before he could reach the whitewash, the BARLA team deservedly level at the break.

They went ahead within minutes of the second period starting as a pass from Smith put Sam Forrester through a huge hole on the left to make it 10-6.

There were nerves now in the Barrow camp, with BARLA looking to further extend their lead, but the doubts were settled as Wiper sent Adam Clay in for a sliding finish in the left corner.

At 10-10, it could have gone either way and it seemed to heading in Raiders’ direction when Haggerty barged over the line from close range as his side applied pressure.

This should have been the time for the professionals to kick on and show their superior fitness, but the amateurs were refusing to buckle and struck back, this time through one of their South Cumbrian aces.

The ball came to Adam Nicholson on the left flank and he powered ahead, cutting Barrow asunder and going over to reduce the gap to two points.

They were the side in the ascendancy and went ahead as a loose pass near their own line was plucked from the air by Pat Foulston.

He accelerated away, showing the entire Raiders defence a clean pair of heels and racing to score between the posts at the opposite end of the park, putting the Great Britain boys 20-16 ahead with just 15 minutes to go.

The odds were on them hanging on, but Haggerty – who was producing a one-man show of defiance – hit them again as he collected a Casey chip over the top and dived in for his hat-trick.

There were two points between the sides now as the clock ticked down, with BARLA pushing at every opening in an attempt to claim the victory their efforts and performance deserved.

But time ran out on them and they could not produce a final game-winning break.

Instead, it was Barrow taking the honours, if few of the plaudits, in a triumph far less impressive than their defeat to Keighley seven days before.


Have your say

greg i`m not knocking you i`m knocking the one`s that pounce on AFC when things don`t go wrong i`ve not got a problem with raiders only the ones that think there most superior above others by knocking rival sporting side all this rivalry should be kept behind closed doors,as one day they`ll all need each other

Posted by paul on 15 January 2013 at 01:55

555 people on a miserable day isn't a bad turnout for a preseason friendly.
The two games we have played have given plenty of positives. In both games we played with the regulation 17 players whilst the opposition used more than would be allowed in competitive matches. We will have a new team this year and some of the players that have left will be hard to replace but the new players will step up to the mark. Casey ad a good debut and Kurt Haggerty chipped in with some good tries.
No one believes that we will walk away with the league, there are some good sides in this division and the Raiders goal should be to consolidate and take this season as a springboard for the future.
Reading some of the comments on here I can't hello but smile at the "doomed, doomed we're all doomed" mentality.
The Raiders will be ok.

Posted by Ron Banks on 14 January 2013 at 19:59

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