DONCASTER Rovers clipped the Bluebirds’ wings in their second pre-season friendly at Holker Street.
First half goals by John Oster and Simon Gillett secured Rovers a 2-0 win over Barrow.
“With the week we’d had it was an excellent performance,” said Rovers No 2 Richard O’Kelly.
“We’d spent the previous four days at an outward bound camp in Eskdale and the players didn’t kick a ball while they were there.
“We worked on a lot of communication exercises, what works, what doesn’t work, and what you need to focus on and how important it is to have a plan and organisation and for everyone to understand their role within that.
“We did various exercises and had good fun doing it, and it could all be related back to football.
“We also did some fitness work and a lot of good things came out of the break which the lads took into the game.
“I think everyone did well and I’d probably describe it as a good team performance.”
Rovers fielded five trialists who had travelled up to Cumbria with the squad on Tuesday.
“All the lads who came away with us showed a lot of good qualities. They got on board with what we do and joined in very well and were part of the week.
“As I say, the players hadn’t touched a ball whilst they’ve been up here and a few of the lads felt it a little bit even though they only played for 45 minutes.
“But we are only two weeks into pre-season and we’ve got another three weeks to go and our fitness levels will be right up there when we start the season.
“What we’ll also improve is our understanding of what is going on in the game. What was apparent on Saturday is that a lot of good lessons were learnt.
“It was a good work-out for us. Barrow were well organised and were very enthusiastic.
“They’ve got some good players who have played League football and some of them were on the way down and some were on the way up.
“They were a good unit and they’ve got an enthusiastic management staff.
“They showed us great hospitality again and we were very pleased with the day.”
The players were given the day off yesterday but were back in today ahead of tomorrow’s third warm-up game against Mansfield Town at Field Mill.
n A number of the Rovers players will be involved in the popular Twenty20 cricket match against Doncaster Town CC at Town Fields on Thursday night starting at 5.30pm.
n The Rovers Supporters Club are running a coach to Saturday’s friendly at Carlisle, which also serves as a testimonial for former full-back Sean McDaid. To book ringPaul on 01427 880154.
n Match report: p44