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Tuesday, 23 September 2014

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Barrow Raiders new boys fitting in well at Craven Park

THE new band of travelling talent who will be part of Barrow Raiders’ Championship campaign next season are bedding in well.

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RECENT RECRUITS: Left to right, Barrow Raiders signings Kurt Haggerty, Daniel Jones, Max Wiper, Brad Brennan and Matt Haggarty at Craven Park LINDSEY DICKINGS REF: 50041795B005

Coach Darren Holt has been happy with how his seven new faces from outside the area have adapted to life at Craven Park.

Danny Jones, Kurt Haggerty, Matthew Haggarty, Adam Clay, Brad Brennan, Sean Casey, Dean McGilvray and Jack Spencer have all signed for Raiders for the 2013 season.

Along with established hooker James Dandy, the five are travelling to training three times a week from their Lancashire bases and Holt has been delighted with their efforts.

“The reaction has been very good from the travellers,” he said. “There will occasionally be different reasons why they can’t get up, but as long as there is a communication process and as long as it is not repetitive, then we should be able to manage it. The reaction we have had so far is very good and the key for me is to try and keep the traininginteresting and to keep the players buying into it, so they don’t go looking for excuses not to go.”

Clay, Haggarty and Spencer all know each other from their time in the Salford City Reds Academy – from where they also know Barrow-based new boy Max Wiper.

Clay is also a former team-mate of McGilvray at Leigh, while Brennan was with Barrow on dual-registration last season.

As a result, each of them has been able to easily slot into the squad as they have begun their pre-season preparations, with few – if any –issues over integration.

“It has been a seamless transition, I think,” Holt added.

“A lot of the guys know each other and they have already formed themselves into their little groups for coming up, so it has not been a problem.”

One man who is not currently part of the Raiders squad is former Warrington Wolves junior Tom Brannon.

The Barrow Island youth product’s name appeared among the squad on the club website, before hastily being taken down.

That led to speculation the young winger was about to be unveiled as a new signing, but – while admitting he has spoken with Brannon – Holt said it was an error entirely down to him when he was asked to give a players’ list to the site administrator.

He said: “It was a bit of an oversight. I have already spoken to Tom and he is interested in coming down just to train with us.

“When I was asked about a list of players, I put Tom on the list, where nothing official has been sorted yet, nor have we done anything official yet.

“It was maybe wrong for me to put his name down.

“We have spoken to Tom and he does seem keen to come down and hopefully we will be getting that organised going forward.”

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