Barrow boss Nigel Wright hails Jamie Rooney improvement

Jamie Rooney
Rooney has four England caps gained during his Super League days

Barrow Raiders head coach Nigel Wright says half-back Jamie Rooney's break from action has reignited his performances at Craven Park.

The 31-year-old was dropped for the trip to Leigh, but starred for Raiders in Sunday's 43-25 win at Halifax.

"His reaction has been outstanding," Wright told BBC Radio Cumbria.

"His all-round game is getting better, his confidence is returning, and when he's on form there's no better half-back in the competition."

Wright continued: "He's getting somewhere near that now, we'll keep working with him, we'll keep looking after him too.

"He's only going to get better, but we're starting to see the Jamie Rooney of old at the moment."

The former England international joined Raiders from Wakefield Trinity Wildcats in July 2009, having made a full recovery from a heart scare during routine knee surgery.

Rooney's return to form has coincided with an improvement in the performances of the Raiders squad as a whole.

Since a heavy defeat at Featherstone last month, Raiders have responded with two wins from three, and gained a bonus-point after a narrow defeat by leaders Leigh Centurions.

"I've questioned three or four of the players, why they're actually playing at this level, there's four or five who can play at a higher level if they strive to get there," Wright added.

"I'd gladly help that, if players have to leave the club for pastures new to play at a higher level then fair play to them.

"We want to lift the players to a higher level who are more than capable in our division and can handle themselves at a level above.

"While we've got them though, we're more than happy to keep them."