BARLA squad named for RAF clash

BARLA International Manager Mick Turner has named an eighteen man squad for their opening Skanska Cup game against the RAF at Saddleworth Rangers ARLFC on Wednesday 14th March kick off 7.00pm. Turner has omitted eight players from the Open Age Squad, which are going on tour to South Africa because of commitments with their amateur clubs in the third round of the Carnegie Challenge Cup this weekend.

The eighteen man squad is:

Michael Backhouse (Roose Pioneers)
Paul Brown (Castleford Panthers)
Matthew Danville (Skirlaugh)
Kevin Dickens (Sharlston Rovers)
Andy Dobson (Blackbrook)
Jon Eccles (Hull Dockers)
Joe Elliott (Barrow Island)
James Fairbank (Elland)
Simon Kilby (Skirlaugh)
Gary Lumb (Sharlston Rovers)
Lee Maskill (Sharlston Rovers)
John McMullen (Wigan St Judes)
Matthew Myers (Shaw Cross Sharks)
Richard Owen (Wigan St Patricks)
Trevor Penrose (Skirlaugh)
Ryan Robb (Kells)
Danny Smith (Shaw Cross Sharks)
Kevin Thompson (Wath Brow Hornets)

BARLA Coach Chris Middlehurst said,
“It’s a new start to the season for us and we have had a couple of training sessions together but there a couple of new faces in the side as we have added to the squad from lads that we have seen in the County games. They haven’t played much together but we are much better prepared than this time last year.

“An eighteen man squad has been named from the Open Age Squad going to South Africa and it will consist of all the players apart from those playing in this weekends Carnegie Challenge Cup ties for their respective amateur clubs. The eighteen man squad will be training on Sunday in preparation for the Skanska Cup game. We need to have a look at the new lads and it is probably good that it has come around like this and we can look at them all in one shot rather than two or three. There is still experience in the squad that was there last year.

“We will go into the game with the RAF as favourites but I think that the Services are getting stronger all the time because there are quite a lot of lads joining who have played rugby league at amateur clubs. So they are getting a good set of lads together plus they will be in camp for four or five days before they are due to play us so it will be a tougher fixture than in the past and we are aware that they are going to compete for the full eighty minutes. We are hoping that we get a good crowd from Oldham which supports the amateur game well for our first game in our defence of the Skanska Cup.”

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