PAUL Crarey believes the time is right for Liam Harrison to bow out following the forward's final home appearance for Barrow Raiders in the win over Doncaster on Sunday.

The 33-year-old, who was given a guard of honour from both teams prior to kick-off, will bring down the curtain on his illustrious career with the club following Saturday's Kingstone Press League One play-off final at Toulouse Olympique.

Harrison has the chance to go out on a high by helping his hometown club earn promotion back to the Championship.

Head coach Crarey is proud of the contribution the former Ireland international has made since bringing him to Craven Park during his first spell in charge in 2005.

“We spoke to him about staying on, but then on Saturday we spoke to him about maybe it is time for him to go,” said Crarey. “He's done his time and we don't want the lad to end up in a wheelchair.

“He wants to go out on a high, he's a great lad, I brought him here 11 years ago and I'll see him out in his time here, and he's been magnificent.

"He probably hasn't played at the highest level, as in Super League, but when he could have walked away from the club he hasn't.

“He's played when they've been relegated, he's played when they've been promoted and he's put his hand up and played this year after an indifferent year last year. We've looked after him and he's been magnificent this year.

“The lads love playing with him, but it's only fair that he hangs up his boots, supports this club, comes down and everybody shakes his hand because he has been magnificent.”

Whatever the result of Saturday's final, Harrison will still have the chance to say one last goodbye to the Craven Park faithful when a Cumbria Select XIII face Scotland in his testimonial match on Friday, October 21.

He will continue to fill an ambassadorial role for Barrow off the field as well, along with switching sports to pursue an interest in competing in triathlons.

And Crarey is in no doubt Harrison will come to be regarded as one of Raiders' all-time greats – not just for his playing achievements, but also for how he has stuck by the club through its various highs and lows over the past decade.

“With Liam, he has other interests and I think he's bought himself a bike and looking for these Ironman challenges,” said Crarey. “Whatever he does, he'll be really focused on doing that.

“There won't be much impact or anyone trying to take his head off, but down here, he'll be like Steve Mossop, David Cairns and all of the great players who have played at this club.

“He'll be held in high esteem by everybody, not only for his playing ability, but how he has presented himself and worked for the club in all this time.

“Yes, he's been paid for it, but some people get paid and don't care. He gets paid for it and he does care.”