Barrow Raiders sign Aussie pack star
BARROW’S preparations for next season have taken another positive step with the capture of Aussie second rower Jarrad Stack.
The 28-year-old Workington Town packman had been with the north Cumbrian club for eight years, but the lure of working with Barrow coach Paul Crarey proved too hard for him to resist and he has joined the Craven Park outfit on a two-year deal.
Melbourne-born Stack wants to help Barrow gain promotion in 2017 after the side agonisingly missed out at the end of this season, and he believes his wealth of experience can help the Raiders overcome that final obstacle this time around.
Askam-based Stack, a police officer at Sellafield, is looking forward to meeting up with his new team-mates and said the main reason of joining up with Barrow was to play under Crare
“I have always wanted to play under Cresta, the opportunity came up,” he said.
“I think everything pointed to come down and play for Cresta, and I live locally now so the travel will be a lot easier for me.”
Stack is expecting another big occasion soon, with his wife, Kathryn, due to give birth in January.
The forward was part of the Melbourne Storm set-up Down Under and played for North Devils.
Town gave Barrow permission to talk to Stack at the end of the season and although he had an option of joining two other clubs wanted to come to Barrow.
“I think he will be outstanding, Liam (Harrison) has gone now so it was important we got somebody in,” said Raiders head coach Crarey.
“We nearly had a deal with somebody else, but when Jarrad came up we had to give back-word on the player, I am not going to say who it is, but we have got to do what’s best for the club and somebody local, who is living three miles away, is better than somebody travelling.
“The other player was very good but I think we have got the best deal with Jarrad.”
Barrow recently signed exciting St Helens half-back Lewis Charnock for two years, and Crarey added: “We are trying to put everybody on a two-year deal now, because at the back end of this year it was horrific dealing with lads talking to other clubs and trying to keep them and the place in order, so we have taken that out of the equation.
“For us it’s a long term thing about getting to the Championship and being sustainable, but again I think we have made ourselves really solid.”
Raiders joint director of rugby Andy Gaffney said of the Stack signing: “We are always looking to bring players of that calibre to the club.
“We had a word with Jarrad and he is really excited about the future at the club and wants to be part of a winning team.”
Looking ahead to next season which will see Toronto Wolfpack introduced in League One, Crarey added: “We want to be in the mix again, we’ve enjoyed what we’ve done, we are just happy with the way things are going, the under-16s development has just started this week big numbers again, 22 kids have turned out.”