Barrow Raiders forward Tom Hopkins has urged his side to regroup quickly following Monday’s Betfred Championship defeat to Halifax Panthers. 

The Raiders came into the contest off the back of consecutive victories, but they were unable to replicate their success as the in-form Panthers ran out 43-18 winners at the Matt Johnson Prestige Stadium. 

Attention quickly turns to a trip to Yorkshire this Sunday to face a York City Knights side currently third in the division, with just three defeats from their 16 league fixtures so far in 2022.

Hopkins, who left the field early on during Monday’s contest due to a head knock, has urged his team-mates to show their quality on a regular basis over the coming weeks.

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Reflecting on their recent defeat, he said: “We knew going into the game that Halifax were going to be one of the best teams we’ve played against.

“When we did our video analysis, Paul [Crarey] said that they were the best team he’d viewed; better than Featherstone and Leigh, in terms of their principles and effort.

“We were under no illusions over what type of team was going to turn up, and I feel like we didn’t respect the ball. We tried to play a little bit too much.

“We weren’t completing our sets, and against a team that completes their own so well, if you don’t match that they’re going to run away with the game.”

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He added: “We’ve got one less day to recover now, but losing in the way we did on Monday, we want to have a reaction as quickly as possible. 

“We’ll definitely be wanting to bounce back and try to improve on where we went wrong. 

“The biggest thing for us is showing consistency week in, week out. Every team can have their ups and downs, but we need to show our quality on a regular basis.”

Hopkins, who recently made his international debut for Wales, admits things don’t get any easier this weekend as the Raiders look to preserve their place in the top six of the Betfred Championship. 

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However, with Paul Crarey’s squad keen to make amends for Monday’s display, he is confident that there will be no shortage of motivation in the camp ahead of their trip to York.

“It’s going to be tough going there, so we know we have to be on our game again this Sunday,” he said. “We’ve probably got a little more motivation this week because of Monday’s defeat. 

“A lot of the lads were quite deflated because we didn’t play how we normally play, so we want to put things right.”

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