The League 1 Cup final kicks off this year’s Summer Bash at Bloomfield Road, Blackpool as Barrow Raiders come head to head with North Wales Crusaders on Saturday, May 27 at 12.00pm.
Barrow currently sit in second place in the Kingstone Press League 1 table and progressed to the final after cruising to a 64-14 victory over Oxford in their semi-final in Cumbria.
Coach Paul Crarey believes it’ll be a special reward for their impressive form this season if they can win on Saturday, he said, “It’s something we set out our stall to do, we want to win as a group and as a goal at the start of the season we wanted to take the fans to Blackpool.
“I think we’re on par with a lot of teams in League 1, the lads have got a great culture in the club and work hard. We’re going all out this weekend to win it.
Crarey is looking forward to the fans getting behind the team at Blackpool, he continued, “We took the fans to Leeds a few weeks ago in the Challenge Cup and took 13 coach loads, 800 or 900 people travelled with us and the town is starting to buzz with rugby league again.
“A little kid came up to me at the game and said, ‘Hey Crarey, I want to play for your team’ he didn’t have a Super League shirt on he had a Barrow shirt on.
“It’s a massive milestone for us that the sport is growing here and the team deserve a little bit of success for the following we’re starting to get and the work we’re putting in.”
North Wales Crusaders are no strangers to League 1 Cup victory after lifting the trophy in 2015 with an 8-14 victory over now Kingstone Press Championship club Swinton Lions.
The Welsh side secured a 37-28 win over University of Gloucestershire All Golds to reach the final at Bloomfield Road, Blackpool.
Despite being 11 places behind their opponents in the League 1 table, coach Mike Grady says his team shouldn’t be written off, he said, “Barrow are going in to the game as favourites and I guess my team talk’s done for me because everyone expects them to win.
“It’ll be a hard game but they’re beatable, everyone is on the day. There’s no pressure on us because everyone is expecting Barrow to do their job and hopefully that will filter down to the players.
“They’ll want to put their loss against Toronto right and bounce back so it’ll be tough but there’s no favourites in a final so I’m looking forward to it.
“Considering where we were at the start of the year it’s fantastic to be in a final. I don’t think we expected to be there but we’re all made up that we can take the fans to Blackpool.
“They’re a fantastic bunch that travel with us wherever we go and they’ll enjoy the day whatever the outcome.”
Tickets for this year’s Summer Bash at Bloomfield Road, Blackpool on Saturday, May 27 and Sunday, May 28 can be purchased by calling the Rugby League Ticket Office on 0844 856 1113 or by visiting www.rugby-league.com/tickets.