THE RAIDING PARTY: It’s a good time to be a Cumbrian RL fan
Last updated at 14:39, Thursday, 05 July 2012
THE last week or so has been a good time to be a Cumbrian rugby league supporter.
A week yesterday the combined county side triumphed in the annual Nines competition and on Sunday in Championship One, all three of Cumbria’s professional sides were victorious and now look well set to fill three of the four available promotion spots come September, when the league season ends.
Barrow Raiders, not for the first time in 2012, earned three points the hard way in coming from 11-0 down at half-time to win 30-17.
The race for the league leaders’ trophy now seems to be a clear three-way battle between Barrow, Workington and Doncaster.
With all three out of action this weekend, we, the supporters, can look forward to the final six league fixtures and speculate as to which side is likely to finish top of the pile ahead of the play-offs in September.
If Barrow are to retain top spot, then the team must navigate a very difficult five-day spell in a fortnight’s time. On Sunday, July 15 there is a trip to third-placed Doncaster, followed by a home match against fourth-placed Whitehaven on Thursday, July 19, a match which is being televised live by Premier Sports. Please note that this match may well be a 7pm kick-off to eliminate the potential for the use of floodlights towards the end of the match. This sensible shift of start time would mean that the club do not face a huge bill for hiring in additional floodlighting to supplement our own, which are not entirely perfect for TV matches.
However, a final decision cannot be made until the availability of stewards, a doctor and other services have been confirmed. Please watch the local press and club website for final confirmation of the start time.
What the team needs more than anything else for the Haven match is the huge and vociferous support of the Barrow public. Aside from enhancing our title push, it is highly likely that our promotion to the Championship for 2013 will become a mathematical certainty that night. Surely a gate in excess of 1,500 is not an unreasonable expectation for such an important fixture?
Back to the Nines competition, which was televised live from Headingley on Premier Sports. It was good to see four Barrow players in Liam Campbell, Mike Backhouse, James Dandy and Ruairi McGoff all picking up winners’ medals.
It was widely reported after the final that a late try by Brett Carter sealed Cumbria’s victory in the final. Just to put the record straight, it was unquestionably Barrow’s Dandy who crossed the line late in the match for the killer touchdown.
Incidentally, James was a member of the Wigan side which won the Nines in 2010, so he picked up a second winners’ medal.
Finally, don’t forget the Hall of Fame induction event this Saturday at the Raiders Bar (7pm start) when we will be inducting three more former players – Alec Troup (1937 Wembley captain), Jack Grundy (1955 Lance Todd Trophy winner) and John Cunningham (1970s England player).
Our heritage and history are important and the expansion of the Hall of Fame can only help to keep the memory alive of glory days and great players. Barrow was once one of the major forces in rugby league and, with hard work and good support, we can be again.
Remember – the future is bright; the future is blue and white.
First published at 13:46, Wednesday, 04 July 2012
Published by http://www.nwemail.co.uk
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