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Sunday, 05 July 2015

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Clay’s clarion call as Barrow Raiders face Doncaster

TWINKLE-TOED winger Adam Clay believes Barrow can put right what went wrong in their Championship opener as they host Doncaster tomorrow.

Clay showed all his pace as he intercepted a pass in his own half and ran 60-plus metres to score one of only two tries in the 42-12 defeat to Hunslet last weekend.

But that was one of a handful of bright moments for a Raiders side well-beaten and given a baptism of fire following their promotion last season.

Now, Barrow return to the Craven Park turf where they won every competitive match they played last season, with Clay hopeful they will up their game against the side which pipped them to the Championship One Grand Final just four-and-a-half months ago (3pm kick-off).

“Hopefully there are a few things we can put right against Doncaster this weekend from the Hunslet game,” said the 22-year-old former Leigh Centurions flier. “I don’t think in any area, attack or defence, we were right last weekend.

“We’ve worked hard on defence in training and attack as well, so we will be looking to be a lot sharper and hopefully we can get on the front foot early doors.

“I don’t think we were very fast out of the blocks last week and it is key for us to get a good start, especially at home as well.

“Both Hunslet and Doncaster are two teams who are going to be in similar positions to us come the end of the season.

“Doncaster are a team we can match up against and hopefully we can get the result.

“I think there are a few of the lads who feel like they owe them one from last year in the Grand Final, so I’m sure everybody is going to be up for it.”

Clay, who helps fit fires for a friend’s father during the day, before travelling from Lancashire to train at Barrow three times a week, believes last week’s loss to Hunslet can serve as a wake-up call for the team.

He recognises the problems that the side came up against at the South Leeds Stadium, but is confident they can build every week as they learn more about their new team-mates.

“It was definitely a bit of a wake-up call, but you’ve got to put it behind you, you can’t dwell on things like that,” said Clay.

“The best thing with rugby league is that you’ve got a game the following week to put a few things that went wrong right.

“We’ve trained this week and trained hard around a few things which were problem areas for us and hopefully, we’ve solved those and we can look forward to this week’s game.

“It’s still early doors in the season. We’ve got a relatively new squad and as we play more we are going to get better. It’s tough to just go out there straightaway and play at your best, but we’re training hard and I don’t think it’s doom and gloom by any means.”

He added: “I think it will be a big game for us this weekend. We’re at home, with all the fans behind us, so hopefully we can come out with a win.”

l Barrow forward Kurt Haggerty has been handed a one-match ban by the RFL following a charge of striking in the season-opener against Hunslet last week. He is available to face Doncaster tomorrow, but misses next week’s trip to Featherstone.

l Dalton RL’s North West Counties fixture against Widnes Moorfield tomorrow has become the latest in a long string of home fixtures for the Kelland Park club to be postponed.

Their Cheshire opponents, like many before them, have said they are unable to raise a team to travel to Furness.

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