Ulverston and Walney Central aim to set up Cumbria Cup final showdown

Team talk: Ulverston coach Phil Atkinson is hoping to mastermind victory over Hensingham in the Cumbria Cup semi-final MILTON HAWORTH
Team talk: Ulverston coach Phil Atkinson is hoping to mastermind victory over Hensingham in the Cumbria Cup semi-final MILTON HAWORTH
16 March 2017 3:59PM

IT is a big day for Ulverston and Walney Cents tomorrow, as they bid to reach the Cumbria Cup final.

Standing in their way are tough West Cumbrian foes in the shape of Hensingham and Glasson respectively, but with home advantage, the two Furness clubs will go in with confidence.

Ulverston v Hensingham

(Dragley Beck, 2.30pm)

“A MASSIVE day for the club,” is how Phil Atkinson describes tomorrow’s clash with the West Cumbrians.

The Ulverston coach said ahead of the semi-final: “This is a massive game for Ulverston.

“It is almost 30 years since we reached the final, and all at the club are looking forward to what should be a great contest.

“And wouldn’t it be nice to see Walney beat Glasson and set up a South Cumbria final?

“Hensingham should be a decent side after beating favourites Distington last week (25-24 after extra-time), while we ourselves went to extra time to beat Wath Brow A 28-24.

“We know it will be a tough game, but we have really been focused and trained well this week and all the guys are ready.

“Last week was our first run-out, and though a little rusty at times we scored some good tries in attack and we had to work hard in defence. All we want is to have a big support for the lads and for Ulverston to turn out in big numbers.”

Unavailable are Liam Whinfield and Che Smith, while Kieron Potts is doubtful with an elbow injury. Into the squad come 18-year-old Kirkby Lonsdale centre Jack Akrigg a good addition to the club along with James Porter, who should be passed fit after a rib injury, and Mike Reeks.

Hensingham, who look like they will have the services of former Barrow Raiders half-back Liam Campbell in their camp once his commitments with Whitehaven rugby union are over, will have the experienced former Haven player Leroy Joe guiding them around the park.

Walney Central v Glasson Rangers

(Central Drive, 1.30pm)

Cents are looking to claim a second West Cumbrian scalp in their quest to reach the final, having defeated Seaton last weekend.

The game is an early kick-off (1.30pm) – and missing from last week are James Finch, Declan Gavin, Ethan Furness and Dave Nicholson.

But on the flip side, back come Liam Finch and Jack Rushton, along with two from the A-team squad.

Coach Jan Elliott is quietly confident of making progress.

He said: “We are at home, and after last week’s win feel we can go through. Seaton were a big side in what was a tough game and I thought we dominated them up front.

“We let in a couple of soft tries but overall it was a good performance so tomorrow will be a good test for us and we will respect Glasson. would like it to be a local final, which would be good for the area.”

Millom v Salford City Roosters

(Devonshire Road, 2.30pm)

LIFE dropping down a division has not been easy for the Woollybacks with two straight defeats in National Conference Division Two, but they aim to get their first win when the Roosters make their first trip to the town.

Coach Tom Sibley, who suffered concussion after only five minutes on the pitch last week, said: “Confidence is a bit low at the moment so we have to dig in and pull together.

“We are only two games in so there is no panic in the camp, but it is a must-win as Salford are also looking for their first win.”

Experienced players returning are Ross Brookes, Midge Dixon and Steve Dawson, along with Dominic O’Brien and Luke Brady. However, unavailable are Jonathan Hodgson, Joe Shaw, and Ian Armstong.

Rylands v Barrow Island

ISLAND look to get some game time after last week’s National Conference Division Three game with Oldham St Annes was called off due to a heavy Rating Lane pitch.

Coaching staff member Steve Clarke said: “It was a pity the game was off as you need continuity, but it was the correct call.

“We just wanted the momentum to continue after a good win over Elland two weeks ago. They were a big side but we overcame that and got the win with a good performance.

“Rylands should be another tough one. They got their first win last week a very good one at Woolston (36-28) so they should be a decent outfit.”

It will be a similar side that beat Elland with Lee Haney possibly turning out despite a wrist injury as could brother Josh (hamstring). They face fitness tests tonight along with Joe Mallinson (hamstring).

WIGAN St Judes v Askam

“YOU don’t become a poor side overnight,” were the words of Askam coach Mike Wilson following his team’s 33-10 home defeat at the hands of Thornhill.

He added: “It was disappointing and it’s best behind us. I am looking for a big performance all round tomorrow. I will wait to see how the players react. It will be a similar side to last week.

“There is no point in making wholesale changes as it is early days. It is up to the lads to prove themselves and get the basics right.”

Folly Lane v Hindpool Tigers

Hindpool Tigers are looking to get their North West Men’s League Division One season up and running as they head to Folly Lane.

Phil Cubiss’ lost their opener 40-20 at Golborne Parkside last weekend.

Barrow And District League

THERE is league action under the Fallowfield Park floodlights tonight as Askam take on Hindpool Tigers (7pm kick-off).

The only match tomorrow sees Barrow Island entertain Walney Central (2.30pm).

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