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Wednesday, 27 May 2015

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Injured Barrow Raiders quartet close to return

BARROW Raiders coach Darren Holt is close to having a full compliment of players at his disposal as the squad’s injuries clear up.

Nathan Mossop returned to action in the 14-4 loss to Doncaster on Sunday, with forwards Jack Spencer (foot), Jamie Butler (wrist) and Ruairi McGoff (knee) and winger Tom Brannon (hamstring) all close to action as well.

The pack trio are in full training after their problems and Brannon is waiting for a chance to make his debut, giving Holt selection dilemmas in upcoming weeks.

“All the lads are getting closer,” said the Barrow coach. “Jack will be back full training this week, Jamie Butler doesn’t look too far behind fitness-wise and he is there or thereabouts.

“With Kurt Haggerty copping a ban for the Featherstone game – which will be a tough one – we will need every man we can get.

“But going two weeks forward, we should be getting somewhere back to a full compliment.”

Holt was pleased with the developments regarding winger Lee Haney, who injured his knee against Hunslet on the opening day of the season. The 24-year-old underwent surgery on the problem on Friday and is expected to return to action within a couple of weeks.

Holt added: “There was good news from Lee Haney. He has been in already and had his operation on his knee.

“All it was, was a little trim and they have told me he should be back in full training in a week or so. That’s unbelievable and a real bonus for us.

“I was very surprised when the operation happened, but Lee brings us something that we haven’t got anywhere else and the sooner we can get him back vying for contention the better.

“That said, if you look at the two wingers – Adam Clay and Chris Larkin – with limited opportunities, I thought Chris Larkin did exceptionally well on the wing decision-wise and he gave us that bit of experience.

“The more bodies we can get back, the better position we are going to be in and the more competition it is going to give us.”

One man who has already returned from injury is hooker Mossop.

The 24-year-old Millomite missed the majority of pre-season training and did not feature in any of the friendlies due to a knee problem.

However, he came into the side for the Doncaster match on Sunday and is now looking to establish himself as one of the regular hookers in the team.

“It’s been since the end of August that I last played. It’s good to be back in a Barrow shirt and I’m looking forward to the season,” Mossop said.

“There’s competition for places and at the end of the day it’s up to me to show Darren and the coaching staff that I would be worthwhile in that line-up, whether that is starting or on the bench.

“Hopefully today I put myself about a little bit and I’m looking forward to next week now, if selected, and to keep going in the season.”

l Bookings are being taken for the Barrow Raiders supporters coach to Featherstone on Sunday.

The coach will leave Walney Promenade at 10am and costs £14 for adults and £12 for children aged 14 and under.

Bookings can be made via the Rugby Shop, Scott Street.

l The Raiders Bar will be open for four nights this week, starting tonight, to show sporting events on the big screen.

The bar opens tonight to show Real Madrid versus Manchester United (7.45pm kick-off, bar opens at 7.15pm), tomorrow for the Championship match between Whitehaven and Leigh (7.30pm kick-off, bar opens at 7pm), on Friday for the Warrington Wolves v Catalans Dragons Super league game (8pm kick-off, bar opens at 7.30pm), and on Saturday for Bradford v Castleford (4.45pm kick-off, bar opens at 4.15pm).

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