Former Great Britain forward Gareth Hock has been released by Barrow Raiders without playing a single game for the club.

The 35-year-old suffered a shoulder injury in a pre-season charity boxing event and his release will come as no surprise to Raiders fans.

His contract has been terminated with immediate effect, freeing up cash to strengthen the side in their bid to retain their Championship status.

It was hoped that he would bring his vast Super League experience to the club, but unfortunately things have not worked out for either the club or the player.

Hock, capped four times by Great Britain and five times by England, was regarded as the Raiders' major winter signing as they set out to build themselves into an established Championship side.

But little has been seen of the controversial but highly rated forward since his boxing injury and a club announced his release in an official statement.

“Barrow RLFC has agreed to the immediate termination of Gareth Hock’s contract with the club to enable Gareth to pursue alternative opportunities. Both parties wish each other well for the future.

“Barrow Raiders are committed to doing everything possible to remain in the Championship and the funds that are now available will be used to strengthen the squad.”

Wigan-born Hock had a ten-year stint with his hometown club, interrupted by a two-year drugs ban, playing 191 games and scoring 48 tries for the Warriors.

When a planned move to Parramatta Eels fell through, he joined Widnes Vikings on a season-long loan before moving to Salford.

In 2015, he signed for Leigh Centurions, scoring 12 tries in 53 appearances. He was released by Featherstone Rovers at the end of last season and was considered to become the backbone of the Barrow pack.

In a professional career spanning 16 years he scored 78 tries in 292 appearances – but none of them for Barrow Raiders.

With Papua New Guinea prop Willie Minoga flying home following his wife’s serious car accident and Ryan Duffy on the casualty list, coach Paul Crarey is likely to try to strengthen his pack with the cash saved from the release of Gareth Hock.

But with tough matches at Halifax and Blackpool, where they will face Sheffield Eagles, to come before they have a week off ahead of the next home games against Rochdale Hornets, time is not on the coach’s side.