SOME familiar rugby league faces will be back in action on Walney this weekend.

Tomorrow’s annual Origin match will see former Super League and international ace Ade Gardner and brother Matt, an ex-Widnes and Leeds player, taking part.

Elsewhere, Barrow Island, Askam and Millom host competitive action, with Hindpool on their travels.


(Central Drive, 1pm)

FORMER Barrow, St Helens and Great Britain winger Ade Gardner will line up alongside brother Matt for the South as they try and wrestle the Origin trophy from the North.

The North have a 2-1 advantage over their rivals in the Walney State of Origin fixture, and will run with four props on the bench, while the South have a more balanced side.

The North have the Finch brothers, Liam and James, in their starting line-up, with Jamie Morrow operating at half-back, but the side are lacking Danny Morrow and Andy Litherland, both at Barrow Raiders.

Ethan Furness is ruled out through injury, along with Stu Tippett.

The South have the Elliott brothers, Mike and Matty, and possibly Brad and George Nicholls, while former Barrow winger Jamie Marshall looks set to play, along with Mike Whitehead.

Prior to the game, the under-14s and under-16s will clash, starting at noon.

More than 500 tickets have been sold for the game and concert aftewards, which will feature several bands performing. This year it is being held in memory of Dean Zaccarini, a popular musician who died in March.

Those wishing to attend the game only are allowed into the ground for £2 entry, while those attending both will receive a wrist band.


(Rating Lane, 2.30pm)

BARLA Great Britain youth international Ryan Clegg makes a dramatic return for the Island just weeks after undergoing heart surgery.

Clegg, who joined the Island as an 11-year-old, has come through the ranks at Rating Lane and played for BARLA at under-17s level in Malta two years ago.

He is a speedy winger and has a bright future ahead of him.

Also back in the fold are Dan White and Perry Singleton, while Matt Parkinson takes a well-earned rest in view of Island’s County Cup final with Distington next week.

Chris Burns is hoping to overcome a dead leg to take his place in the centre.

Coach Joe Elliott said: “Places are up for grabs for next week’s Craven Park County Cup final, so all the lads know they have to perform.

“Seaton are a team that blow hot and cold, so we will be on our guard. We are going quite well at the moment and we want to keep the momentum going.”

Island are second in the Cumbria League on 12 points, along with Walney and Wath Brow A, all six points adrift of leaders Distington, who Island ran close two weeks ago.

The Rating Lane side played some sparkling rugby in their 44-18 win over Roose Pioneers last week.


(Fallowfield Park, 2.30pm)

ASKAM should add a further two points in their bid to take a top-two spot in National Conference Division Two when they entertain Stanley.

Jamie Butler and Jonathan Walsh are unavailable, but back in contention are Tom Goffatt, Jordan Herdman and Barry Pugh.

Mark and Kris Tyson, along with Darren Gaskell, are still some time away from returning after injury.

Coach Mike Wilson said: “We were disappointed to lose at Salford two weeks ago (7-4) in poor conditions when they ground out a result.

“All being well, the weather tomorrow should be fine and I expect us to move the ball around the field and play the expansive rugby we are capable of.

“We owe them one after we could only manage a draw at their place.”

Stanley prop up the rest of the teams and are still looking for their first win of the campaign. They have only two points to their name, having claimed a pair of draws.


(Devonshire Road, 2.30pm)

THE Woollybacks take on fellow National Conference Division One strugglers Shaw Cross knowing victory will see them level with the Dewsbury side on six points.

The West Yorkshire outfit have a superior points advantage and Millom would remain second-bottom even with a win.

Millom’s squad is boosted by the returns of Ross Brookes, Paul Carter, Luke Brady, Rickie Donaghue and Chris Warren, though Steve Dawson and Lee Postlethwaite miss out.

Looking ahead to the game, coach Tom Sibley said: “We are quietly confident. Shaw are always a difficult side to beat, but they have struggled lately.

“We have trained really hard this week and I feel our pack will be the key.”


HINPOOL travel to North West Men’s League Division One leaders Orrell hoping to spring a surprise.

Captain Phil Cubiss said: “They are a good team, who are very well drilled and play a good brand of rugby.

“They are yet to be beaten this year in league or cup, so we are under no illusion of the task at hand.

“I’ve yet to name a team to travel as I am still waiting to hear back from a number of players about their availability.

“Regardless of everything else, we will travel there looking to perform better than we did earlier in the season at our spot.

“We were well off the pace that day and this weekend gives us a chance to make amends for the heavy defeat we suffered.

“That’s all I am after this weekend from the boys, an improved performance and to go there, give it a real good go, leaving nothing in the tank and see where we end up.”