A VALIANT effort from Barrow Raiders was not enough to earn them victory over Widnes Vikings, but they still came away with their heads held high after a 20-4 defeat at home to the full-timers this afternoon.

The Raiders led by four point at half time courtesy of two penalties from Jamie Dallimore, while managing to keep the visitors scoreless during the first 40 minutes too thanks to some sterling work in defence.

Widnes showed plenty of signs of frustration in the first half but rediscovered some composure after the break and went on to seal victory with four tries, two of which were converted.

Playing with the wind at their backs blowing in from the Walney end of Craven Park, Barrow made a positive start to the match, completing well and holding firm in defence.

The hosts took the lead in the 14th minute, with a break from the lively Luke Cresswell after Jono Smith had ripped the ball one-on-one from the Vikings’ Brad Walker leading to a penalty 40 metres out which Dallimore slotted over.

At the other end, Widnes were unable to make the most of the good positions they got themselves in, not least with full-back Jack Owens guilty of throwing the ball into touch twice while looking for team-mates out wide.

Barrow then had a try ruled out on the half-hour mark when Martin Aspinwall dotted the ball down, only for eagle-eyed referee James Child to spot the Raiders skipper in front of the ball when Lewis Charnock kicked it.

However, the Raiders did move further ahead six minutes for the break when stand-off Dallimore kicked a second penalty from around 43 metres out after Widnes had been penalised for interfering at the play-the-ball.

Two tries in the first 11 minutes of the second half made it advantage Widnes though – the first coming when a deflected kick from Tom Gilmour caused all sorts problems in the Barrow defence and was dotted down by half-back partner Danny Craven, with Gilmour converting too.

Then in the 51st minute, scrum-half Gilmour executed a 40/20 and the Vikings attacked quickly, with Jordan Johnstone setting up former Askam youth player Walker for an unconverted try against his hometown club.

Barrow kept battling away, but the game was effectively settled in the 67th minute when Ryan Ince managed to dive over close to the touchline on the right for an unconverted score after taking a pass from Owens.

And Vikings skipper Hep Cahill gave the scoreline a bit more of a lopsided look five minutes from time when he managed to twist out of a tackle to dot down under the posts, giving Gilmour a simple conversion.

Barrow Raiders: Luke Cresswell; Stargroth Amean, Jarrad Stack, Jake Spedding, Deon Cross; Jamie Dallimore, Lewis Charnock; Glenn Riley, Wartovo Puara Jr, Josh Johnson, Jono Smith, Danny Morrow, Jordan Walne. Interchange: Nathan Mossop, Willie Minoga, Tom Walker, Martin Aspinwall.

Widnes Vikings: Jack Owens; Ryan Ince, Anthony Gelling, Keenan Brand, Owen Buckley; Danny Craven, Thomas Gilmour; Hep Cahill, Jordan Johnstone, Harrison Hansen, Brad Walker, Sam Wilde, Macgraff Leulaui. Interchange: Jay Chapelhow, Ted Chapelhow, Owen Farnworth, Lloyd Roby.

Referee: James Child.