After winger Adam Ford signed a new contract with Barrow Raiders on Monday, rugby director Andy Gaffney has confirmed there are several other youngsters the first team are keeping tabs on.

Ford looks set to step up to senior level, with the 19-year-old finalising an 18-month deal that will keep him at Craven Park until the end of the 2020 season.

It came less than a week after his final game for Furness Raiders, for whom he scored two tries in their AoC National Cup final victory against Wigan Warriors Foundation College.

Given how successful the under-19 team has been during the last couple of seasons, there's a good chance that other young players could make the step up in the near future.

Gaffney said: "There are a few good players in the academy that we keep a regular look at and it just shows that they're is a pathway through to the pro ranks at Barrow.

"That's why a lot of work went on in the early stages of setting that up and we're beginning to see the gains of it, really."

The aim for the Raiders is that they will eventually be able to 'grow their own' more regularly, which could help in future if they were to ever have a repeat of the injury crisis that has ripped through their squad this season.

Ford joining the senior ranks should come as a boost, particularly at a time where bringing new players into the fold to help Barrow's fight against relegation is proving difficult.

Gaffney said: "Behind the scenes they're really working hard at bringing through young players.

"We're trying to get in extra bodies but it's hard to bring players in at this time of year, especially halfway through the season. Clubs are trying to keep hold of players because they've already got injuries.

"It's a lot easier trying to bring in players at the beginning of the year or near the end of the year, so it's not a good time to bring players in, but I'm sure we'll be able to sort something out in the coming weeks."