Barrow head coach hails ‘outstanding’ Josh Wood ahead of Raiders debut

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  • Josh Wood
    English rugby league footballer

Barrow head coach Paul Crarey has been impressed by 2022 recruit Josh Wood during the club’s pre-season training.

Wood missed out on the club’s first pre-season friendly with a slight knock, but is in contention to make his debut next week.

Raiders hosted neighbours Workington in their opening pre-season friendly of the year, with the club preparing for their return to the Championship. It resulted in a 24-12 victory for the hosts, with debut tries from Danny Langtree and Ellis Gillam. Hakim Miloudi and Ryan shaw also crossed for four pointers.

Read: Friendlies round-up: Midlands Hurricanes first game & Barrow’s derby win

Paul Crarey impressed by former Super League hooker Josh Wood

“Josh [Wood] has been outstanding at training,” said Crarey.

“I’ve never seen anybody as physical in contact drills as Josh Wood. He can ping a ball left and right and he’s very composed, so he’s massive for us.”

Read more: Barrow add forward from Championship rivals

Former Wigan half-back Jarrod Sammut made the move to the Matt Johnson Prestige Stadium during the off-season. The 34-year-old didn’t feature against Workington, but could return next week in a friendly with Newcastle Thunder.

Jake Carter, Jarrad Stack and Nathan Mossop are all also nearing return.

Paul Crarey on 2022 squad

“The team with the best versatility of players might come out on top, and it’s about stealing those close games,” said Crarey.

“Covid is going to play a major factor, but we’ve got back-up. We’ve got some good players who sat out [against Workington], and we got a win 24-12 when we were well off the pace in terms of the structure and how we want to play.

“I thought we had a desire to defend our goal-line in the first half, especially when we were up against a mountain of possession.”

He continued: “If we’re going to be a good side and compete in the Championship, we’re going to have to sacrifice ourselves.”

READ MORE: List of pre-season friendlies

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