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Barrow Raiders suffer heavy defeat at Featherstone with pictures



FEATHERSTONE showed Barrow just what it takes to be a top side in the Championship with a crushing victory at Post Office Road.

Raiders’ opening two matches had been against sides expected to be battling for their Championship lives with them come the end of the season. This was their first outing against one of the big boys.

For 40 minutes, it was the kind of beating dished out to the new kid by a pack of bullies after he carelessly reveals his penchant for Barbie dolls.

The bookies gave Rovers a 34-point start on the handicap, showing exactly how they thought the cash between top and bottom would go and for the whole of the first half, they had been hugely optimistic about the visitors’ prospects.

Barrow were played off the park in all areas, given a lesson in just what it means to be in the Championship and left wondering just what this season, still only three weeks old, could have in store for them further down the line.

They responded well in the second half with a spirited battle, never giving in and scoring two tries of their own, but by then the game was long gone.

Holt showed no mercy in changing a side beaten twice in their opening two fixtures, making changes as and where he could.

Mike Backhouse came in on the wing, with Chris Larkin moved to centre and Aaron Low dropped to the bench, while Liam Campbell was left out entirely, Scott Kaighan instead partnering Sean Casey in the half-backs.

James Dandy also returned to the 17-man squad, starting on the bench and rotating with starting hooker Nathan Mossop – a man facing down former team-mate Andy Ellis, a man who guided him during his first season as a professional.

It turned out not to matter who played, the home side were at a different level entirely, outplaying their visitors for almost all the 80 minutes.

Rovers allowed Barrow barely a few minutes before they started their rout, with a suggestion they had been insulted by Raiders matching them in the opening plays.

In that time, Mike Whitehead had hit a superb tackle on Anthony England and then forged a hole with a fine run up the middle of the field, but there ended the Raiders optimism.

A first Rovers try came as Kyle Briggs’ grubber between the sticks completely caught out full-back Dean McGilvray and his hesitance allowed England to collect and score.

Raiders held back the Featherstone offensive a while longer, but could do nothing as Ben Kaye burrowed in from dummy half on the line to double their lead after three successive sets.

Now the floodgates opened. A Dan Toal pass looped into the air as Barrow attacked was taken by Tom Hodson and he set up a move which ended 80 yards downfield with former Raider Matt James scoring between the posts from a Liam Finn pass.

Rovers added to their tally with each of their next three sets.

Ben Kaye, Briggs and Finn put Ian Hardman in on the right, Ellis set up the move which ended with Andy Kain on the scoresheet and also started the next move to put Matty Dale over the whitewash.

The score was already 36-0 as the clock ticked past the half-hour and two more tries were grounded by Rovers before the break.

Briggs put Tommy Saxton in on the left corner and then Hodson scored on the opposite flank, the Raiders defence ripped to shreds and looking disjointed across the park.

Things went Barrow’s way somewhat at the start of the second half as Sean Casey did brilliantly to hold up Matty Dale over the line, before Hepworth crossed only for Kain’s pass to be ruled forward by referee Ronnie Laughton.

Laughton then awarded Raiders two penalties for ripping out, and the visitors were finally on the scoresheet as Casey put a neat short pass into the breadbasket of the charging Toal, who dived in for a try by the posts.

Dandy and McGilvray did superbly to hold Ellis up and stop him scoring a trademark try and Adam Clay took a Finn grubber well in his own in-goal area.

But the hard work that had worked so well was put to waste as a loose Toal pass allowed Rovers two sets in the Barrow half and Ellis put James Lockwood in near the sticks.

Worse, McGilvray took a nasty blow to the left knee trying to stop the attack and played no further part.

Barrow’s much-improved second-half display continued as they pressed the line and skipper Liam Harrison – immense all afternoon – barged through on the last tackle.

The ball came loose and went over the line, where Hodson could only knock it to ground for Toal to show his poacher’s instincts for his second of the afternoon.

Featherstone responded as Finn went in following a swift break, but Hodson was denied a second as his collection of a Finn kick was ruled offside as Casey lay injured on the turf with a hurt right ankle.

That was the 10th and last try for the home side – each from a different player – and it rounded off the scoring on an afternoon where Barrow’s second-half spirit was no match for the first-half class of the favourites for the title.

Featherstone Rovers Starting XIII: Jonny Hepworth, Tom Hodson, Ian Hardman, Greg Worthington, Tommy Saxton, Kyle Briggs, Liam Finn, Anthony England, Ben Kaye, Matt James, James Lockwood, Jack Bussey, Matty Dale.
Substitutes (all used): Steve Crossley, Andy Bostock, Andy Ellis, Andy Kain.

Barrow Raiders Starting XIII: Dean McGilvray, Adam Clay, Max Wiper, Chris Larkin, Mike Backhouse, Scott Kaighan, Sean Casey, Brad Brennan, Nathan Mossop, Mike Whitehead, Liam Harrison, Danny Jones, Dan Toal.
Substitutes (all used): James Dandy, Andrew Dawson, Matthew Haggarty, Aaron Low.

Referee: Ronnie Laughton.

Atendance: 2,389.


SIX MINUTES; Anthony England try, Liam Finn conversion, 6-0.
14 MINUTES: Ben Kaye try, Finn conversion, 12-0.
19 MINUTES: Matt James try, Finn conversion, 18-0.
22 MINUTES: Ian Hardman try, Finn conversion, 24-0.
26 MINUTES: Andy Kain try, Finn conversion, 30-0.
29 MINUTES: Matty Dale try, Finn conversion, 36-0.
34 MINUTES: Tommy Saxton try, 40-0.
37 MINUTES: Tom Hodson try, Finn conversion, 46-0.
52 MINUTES: Dan Toal try, Sean Casey conversion, 46-6.
60 MINUTES: James Lockwood try, Finn conversion, 52-6.
67 MINUTES: Toal try, Casey conversion, 52-12.
71 MINUTES: Finn try and conversion, 58-12.

Have your say

Dan the two teams will never share a ground,years ago the soccer were in a worst position than of late the board asked if they could help out by sharing the graven park ground until things were sorted out the craven park board refused so this is why it`ll never work & if it doe`s it`ll be the finish for both teams

Posted by paul on 21 February 2013 at 14:58

There you go,an all anonymous---outsider.NEXT.

Posted by Dan Payne on 19 February 2013 at 11:13

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