Barrow Raiders are relishing the opportunity to extend their winning streak against in-form Widnes Vikings at the Summer Bash, according to half-back Ryan Johnston. 

The Raiders will arrive at Headingley having won four consecutive matches – their best form since the opening weeks of the campaign. 

On Sunday they will face John Kear’s Vikings, who, like the Raiders, are yet to taste defeat so far this month.

Ahead of their mouth-watering clash, Johnston insists the Raiders are ready for the task at hand. 

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“Going into this week, everything is hyped up. We need to forget about that, stick to our game plan and not let emotions get the better of us,” he said. “We’re going there to get a job done. 

“They’ve gone through a bit of a purple patch, and as we all know they’re a good club with some good players in there. We can’t underestimate them. 

“They’re playing with a lot of confidence, so it’ll all be about who can play the conditions the best. With it being a big occasion for rugby league, you’ll find teams playing off-the-cuff a little bit. 

“It’s the smarter teams that win these matches, when you’re going there to a big hype, in front of a big crowd. 

“You’ve just got to go there with a job to do and enjoy the occasion afterwards. 

“We’ve had an exceptional year, and there’s no better place to show exactly what Barrow Raiders are all about.”

The club’s recent success has also coincided with Johnston’s return to the side. 

The talented half-back suffered a torn abductor at the start of the year, keeping him sidelined for a number of matches in 2022.

However, with 14 starts now under his belt, he says he is enjoying his rugby again as the return to full fitness continues.

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“I’ve never really come across injuries in my career, so there have been quite a few mixed emotions,” he said. 

“I was probably running at about 70% for the games I was playing in earlier this season. Jake Carter and Jarrod Sammut stood in, and obviously they did a great job.

“Now I’m getting more game time and we’re picking up some really good wins. We’re playing well, and I feel like I’m coming back towards my best now.

“It’s absolutely buzzing at the moment down at training. I’ve been here for five years, and there’s a real brotherhood among the boys at the moment. 

“That’s something I’ve never really experienced before. The lads have all really gelled this year, and Cresta has got the changing room firing.”

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