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League Express


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North Wales Crusaders v Barrow Raiders

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#1 League Express

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Posted 13 February 2014 - 12:04 PM

Sunday 16 February
Kingstone Press Championship Match Preview

North Wales Crusaders v Barrow Raiders (2.30pm)

North Wales Crusaders forward Jono Smith is battling to be fit for Sunday’s Kingstone Press Championship opener against Barrow Raiders.
Smith has a knee problem and will be assessed by coach Clive Griffiths before a final decision is made on his availability.
Griffiths said: “The hard part will be picking a team to start against Barrow. Now it gets serious and we’re looking forward to the start.”
Barrow are set to be without Aaron Lloyd, who broke his hand in last week’s friendly win against BARLA Great Britain, and Chris Rowe, who has also suffered the same injury.
But Raiders coach Anthony Murray still has plenty of choices to make, with players across his squad impressing during last week’s convincing victory.
Murray said: “I’ve got a massive (selection) headache for this first game, but it’s nice to be in that position.”

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#2 League Express

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Posted 13 February 2014 - 04:22 PM

Crusaders head coach Clive Griffiths feels that a home fixture first up in the season is an added bonus.
The Wrexham-based club, who were promoted from Championship One last year, take on Barrow Raiders this Sunday in their opening league fixture of the season.
They head in to the season after two victories over fellow Championship sides Leigh Centurions and Doncaster, as well as a 40-10 defeat to partners Widnes Vikings.
Griffiths says that it is important to try to get off the mark in the first game - and that he is pleased it will be played on home turf.
He said: "The first game in the season is always important. It's good to get off to a good start.
"We're infront of our home fans, who are brilliant - they always have been - and deserve to be supporting a team in the Championship.
"Hopefully the weather will hold and we can get the game on. The fans will play a big part on Sunday."
The former Wales coach has called the new league structures which come in to place from 2015, and mean that the top nine from this year's Championship will stay up, "thought provoking". But he says that it has helped to set goals in place.
He said: "We will have to be at our best at all times this season - it's all to play for.
"We've got our goals in place to finish in the top nine. Every other team - with the exception of the likes of Featherstone, Sheffield, Halifax and Leigh, who will be hard to knock out of the top spaces - will have exactly the same goals.
"It's good to have goals in place which you can focus on. We'll be constantly looking over our shoulders in this division - but I feel we have enough to do well."
Griffiths is hoping that loose forward Jono Smith will be fit in time for Sunday's game, while off-season recruit Michael Platt will also be monitored in training this week.
Wales Rugby League chief operating officer Chris Thair has commended North Wales Crusaders on their achievements to date and wished them luck for the new season
He said: North Wales Crusaders are a tremendous success story for Wales Rugby League and we wish them every success for the 2014 season and their opening game this weekend.
"The club is very active in the local community and has a governance and operational model which is highly regarded across the entire sporting fraternity in Wales.
"The club is led by a board and staff of local business leaders and highly experienced local community members who are extremely proactive in developing new partnerships and ways in which to improve the club.
"The North Wales Crusaders board, staff, players and fans are a credit to themselves and indeed the sport, so we are all justifiably proud of what the club has achieved to date.
"Rugby league in North Wales is a fantastic success story which I've retold many times during my tenure, most recently to our Minister for Culture and Sport, John Griffiths, who was extrememly impressed.
"In 2010 there was one adult community rugby league team in North Wales and little else. In 2013 you had a professional club which not only did the league and cup double in only its second season but also has the second highest fan base in the region.
"Five community clubs were operating in an adult and junior league consisting of 16 teams, five adult and 12 junior, a new Crusaders wheelchair team was playing, an elite training centre at Deeside Leisure is established, a strong street rugby programme, two memorable World Cup games took place, players from the area pulled on a Welsh jersey for the first time for the Dragonhears and junior international sides and over 5000 children were coached in the schools.
"If that isn't a success story I don't know what is and there is also a strong argument to say rugby league is the fastest growing sport in North Wales.
"Now everyone is focused on building upon this momentum and therefore 2014 is going to be very interesting for everyone concerned in Wales Rugby League including North Wales Crusaders."

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#3 gogledd

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Posted 15 February 2014 - 05:15 PM

Amazingly ALL that achievement got totally overlooked on the BBC Wales Sports review of the year, in fact NWC or rugby league never even got a mention. Don't let BBC Wales try and tell you they are committed to rugby league, its disgraceful how disrespectful they are of our sport.

#4 Number 7

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Posted 15 February 2014 - 08:17 PM

BBC Wales are so sorry, they've promised wall too wall live coverage of the Cru' v Barrow game tomorrow. NOT!!!


They are to busy covering live winkle picking and hot dog scoffing down in the south somewhere, and if they're cancelled due to bad weather there is always the grand final of the Neath knitting championships.   :sarcastic:

Edited by Number 7, 15 February 2014 - 10:27 PM.

#5 3feathers

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Posted 15 February 2014 - 10:16 PM

It's not just the BBC that ignore's us.


Wales online have just proudly launched an Android App called "Welsh Rugby Addicts" and it's "The ultimate app for the Welsh rugby fan". Guess what, it doesn't even mention League or the Crusaders. Needless to say I've marked it down and sent them the appropriate feedback.

#6 clwydianrange

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Posted 16 February 2014 - 08:37 AM

Game is on, 2.30 kick off.

#7 Number 7

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Posted 16 February 2014 - 10:46 AM

Wooo Hoooo its game day, Who Are We !!!

#8 bangbang

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Posted 16 February 2014 - 12:22 PM

Is there a radio link? i am stuck in work...
Rip the bludgers heads off!

#9 Number 7

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Posted 16 February 2014 - 12:33 PM

Try BBC Radio Wales  for updates  :biggrin:  :biggrin:  :biggrin:  :biggrin: Not!  More chance of me giving birth!

#10 clwydianrange

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Posted 16 February 2014 - 08:13 PM

A good opening game for crusaders with the sides being more evenly matched than the final score suggested. Good travelling support from raiders with at least 100 there probably more.

#11 raiders96

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Posted 16 February 2014 - 10:18 PM

Credit to both sets of fans today making a good atmosphere! Fairly even first 40 minutes but 2nd half our defence went totally downhill, after platt got shown red I was very confident we could go on to win it, think you lot will go far this season seeming to be a very underrated side and I can't see many teams picking up points at Wrexham! Good luck for the season!

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