Co-operative Championship: Raiders seek to seal top spot

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Barrow Raiders have a second chance to clinch the Co-operative Championship title on Thursday when they visit third-placed chasing Sheffield Eagles.

Thursday September 3 Co-operative Championship Sheffield Eagles v Barrow Raiders

After suffering a shock home loss to Gateshead Thunder on Bank Holiday Monday, coach Dave Clarke, is insisting on a better showing from his charges, saying:

“Sheffield are playing for third spot and we’re playing for top spot.

“We’re in the same situation that we were in on Monday in that we’ve got an opportunity to take the title, but the players know we’ll need to be a lot better.

“It’s a big opportunity for the club and it’s a big achievement already. A lot of people probably would not have put us in this position at the start of the year – staying up was our first priority.”

Clarke is now back at the helm following Steve Deakin’s surprise departure; this after Deakin had previously replaced Clarke. Just how much that in-again-out-again coaching carousel has impacted the Raiders players remains to be seen.

With Danny Halliwell ready to return to action after missing the Gateshead loss due to personal reasons, the Raiders are likely to be at full strength for the game.

Sheffield Eagles coach, Mark Aston, is clearly intent on playoff glory, saying:

“This is the last league game of the season and we want a big finish before the play-offs. It’s live on Sky so it’s a chance for the lads to show what they can do.”

Brendon Lindsay (knee) and Menzie Yere (dead leg) will face fitness tests before Aston can finalise his team.