Raiders boss Paul Crarey pleased to see his team's patience rewarded with Challenge Cup victory
Job done: Paul Crarey watches the action as Barrow beat Keighley 20-0 JON GRANGER
By Marc Bazeley
20 March 2017 11:36AM
PAUL Crarey was pleased to see Barrow Raiders’ patience after half-time pay off as they overcame Keighley Cougars 20-0 to reach the fifth round of the Challenge Cup.
A game played in wild and wet conditions saw both sides cancel each other out until just before the break when Lewis Charnock found a way through to score a converted try.
A further converted score from Charnock, plus unconverted tries from Shane Toal and Declan Hulme, saw the Raiders make certain of their place in the next round after the interval, and head coach Crarey felt they had tried to rush things during the first 40 minutes.
“Lewis gave us a bit of a lifeline where he played square, went through the line and scored just before half-time, and in the second half I thought we were magnificent,” said Crarey.
“People don’t understand how difficult the conditions were. All of the fans were stood at the back of the stand because it was that blustery and wet, and we played with the elements in the first half and only managed six points.
“We talked at half-time about how good we’d have to be to put points on the board. I thought we kicked well in the second half, we supported the ball well and knocked out some massive completions, but also threw some good structure and broke them down.
“We probably weren’t as patient in the first half as we were in the second and we got our reward for that.”
Although playing with the wind at their backs in the first half, Barrow’s defence came under pressure through some high kicks from Keighley half-back Matty Beharrell. However, Crarey was delighted with the way full-back Ryan Fieldhouse, and wingers Shane Toal and Luke Cresswell dealt with them, along with praising the role of the four players coming off the interchange bench.
“I thought the back three were magnificent,” said Crarey. “They came up with a couple of mistakes, but try catching those balls when it’s swirling or picking it up off your boot laces when it’s covered in mud, and I thought the returns were outstanding.
“Luke and Shane were magnificent on kick returns, I thought Ryan Fieldhouse did it tough as a full-back, carried really strong and got it through the line a few times. But our bench were brilliant as well, carrying it forward and getting quick rucks. We built that into our systems, playing quick at the line as well as good structure on edges, and it paid off with a brilliant win.”
Barrow now await tomorrow morning’s draw to find out whether they will get to host one of the four Super League sides which enter at this stage, with Leeds Rhinos, Huddersfield Giants, Salford Red Devils and Leigh Centurions all in the hat.
It is the first time the Raiders have reached round five since 2010, when they went on to face St Helens away in the quarter-finals, and Crarey is hopeful of landing a home draw against one of the big boys.
“At some stage, we want the rub of the green and we want a big side here, and it’s all about money for this club and progressing in this competition,” said Crarey. “It might hurt us later on in the year, but it’s about survival for the club and bringing some money in.
“We’re doing that in doing our job and winning games so that we can do that. This is the second lot (of prize-money) we’ll get from the RFL, so we just want a good draw and a bit of luck, and we want to bring a Super League side or a team who will bring a massive crowd.
“We might not win the game, but it will be exciting for the fans to come and watch a high-quality team play on this pitch.”
l Walney Central will fly the flag for South Cumbria in the Cumbria Cup final after thrashing Glasson 62-8. Ulverston lost their semi-final 26-14 to Hensingham. See full amateur round-up in Tuesday’s Mail.