Widnes Vikings 38 Barrow Raiders 14

VICTORY over Barrow gives Widnes a little more breathing space in the lower reaches of the Betfred Championship table.

Widnes head coach Kieron Purtill made a couple of changes from the midweek win over Featherstone Rovers with centre Anthony Gelling making his long-awaited return from injury Lloyd Roby moving to the wing.

Winger Ryan Ince and forward Harrison Hansen missed out after picking up injuries against Rovers.

Barrow took an early with a penalty goal after Hep Cahill hung around at the tackle but the Vikings struck back on ten minutes when a Danny Craven bomb was tapped back by Jack Owens and prop Jay Chapelhow was on hand to scoop up the loose ball and cross for a six-pointer.

Although some errors crept into Widnes’s game, they looked like they could do damage if they retained possession.

A quick 20-metre restart by Chris Dean saw him make inroads into the Barrow defence and from the resulting pressure substitute Josh Ganson put Chapelhow over for his second close range try with the Barrow defence spread eagled.

The Raiders had a few opportunities at the other end with Jono Smith going closest but getting held up over the try line.

On 32 minutes, the Vikings registered their third try when Joe Lyons long pass found winger Jayden Hatton in space on the right and he jinked over to make it 16-2 at half-time.

It didn’t take the Vikings to get the tins rattling after the break as Craven dummied over from five metres out on the left edge with Owens adding the goal.

Barrow were beginning to look a bit bedraggled and on 46 minutes a Gelling break took Widnes downfield where quick hands from Owens sent Lloyd Roby over in the left corner with the winger showing presence of mind to improve the angle for Owens’ successful conversion.

Try number five came shortly afterwards when Craven’s raking 40/20 kick put the visitors back on their own line and from the next set Lyons sauntered through a huge hole to touch down at the posts to make it 34-2.

Hatton’s second try came after a smart left to right shift was finished off in grand style by the young winger.

Yet another score looked on the cards following a Barrow error on their own line but a sloppy pass was swept up by Raiders winger Deon Cross who raced 90 metres for his side’s first try of the contest.

With the game in the bag at 38-8 a little sloppiness crept into the Vikings’ game and they conceded again when a long pass was plucked out of the air by Barrow flyer Theerapol Ritson who raced in from his own with Jamie Dallimore’s goal making it 38-14.

Widnes: Owens; Hatton, Gelling, Brand, Roby; Craven, Lyons; Cahill, Johnstone, J Chapelhow, Wilde, Dean, Walker. Subs: T Chapelhow, Ganson, Leuluai, Norman.

Barrow: Ritson; Carter, Amean, Spedding, Cross; Dallimore, Carter; Johnson, Puara, Walker, Smith, Morrow, Susino. Subs: Cresswell, Toal, Aspinwall, Walne.

Half-Time: 16-2

Referee: Mr T Grant

Attendance: 3,830