Rugby League

Victorious Army Skipper Knows His Ideal Challenge Cup Third Round Opponent

Corporal Declan Baines wants to face a team closer to home in the next round of the rugby league competition.

Army rugby league captain Corporal Declan Baines wants to face Cumbria-based Barrow Raiders in the Challenge Cup Third Round.

The forces team booked their place in the draw with a golden point victory over Skirlaugh in Aldershot.

Cpl Baines, who was a catalyst for the Army’s second-half comeback, wants to face the semi-professional team in the next round.

"I’m from Cumbria so definitely Barrow Raiders. I’d love that.

"We’re missing a few through work or injuries so we have a few new lads in.

"Everyone’s playing well so they’ll be tough to get out of the team.

"Hopefully, we can get a few lads back for the next round and try and beat whoever we can next."

Corporal Declan Baines was speaking after the 17-16 win over Skirlaugh.

Private Ben O’Connell was the unlikely match-winner with the drop goal and he left "everyone surprised" with the score.

"We normally have a designated golden point drop kicker, which is the full-back Kieron Roche," said Pte O'Connell.

"He kept getting shut down so when it came back from the scrum, I thought I would have a go.

"I just hit it and I think that is why everyone was so surprised when it went over.

"In training, everyone messes about because for a half-back, I can kick the ball but drop goals aren’t really my thing.

"I stay away from it but I just caught it.

"As soon as I caught it, I just knew it was going over. I turned around and saw all the lads jumping up and down."

It is not the first time in recent memory that the Army have won thanks to a golden point.

They beat the RAF to win the Inter Services with an extra-time drop goal in September and Cpl Baines believes that experience led to the Challenge Cup winner.

"We knew we had the belief because we have done it before.

"If you have done it before, you can do it again."