Batley Bulldogs to host charity match ahead of clash with London Broncos

Batley Bulldogs will host a charity rugby match at the Fox’s Biscuits Stadium on Sunday, May 22.

By Jessica Barton
Thursday, 19th May 2022, 4:30 pm
Updated Thursday, 19th May 2022, 5:23 pm
Kim Leadbeater is backing the event which is set to take place at the Fox’s Biscuit Stadium.
Kim Leadbeater is backing the event which is set to take place at the Fox’s Biscuit Stadium.

The match between the British Asian Rugby Association and Colostomy UK is to help raise awareness and combat the stigma around people who live with a stoma, and it will be a curtain-raiser to the Bulldogs’ match against the London Broncos.

Members of both teams joined Batley and Spen MP Kim Leadbeater for a pre-match briefing, alongside rugby legends Ikram Butt and Garry Schofield.

Garry said: “The match will be played under modified masters rules to enable players of all ages and abilities to take part.

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“I would love to be on the pitch myself, but with my eye injury I’m happy to offer my support from the side-lines.”

Ms Leadbeater, who has given her backing to the event, said: “I am delighted to see this match coming to Batley.

“It’s a great example of inclusive sport which enables people from all backgrounds and walks of life to keep active and look after their physical and mental health.”

Team Colostomy UK Rugby League is an initiative set up by the national charity Colostomy UK - with the aim to challenge and change perceptions of what it means to live with a stoma.

Speaking on behalf of Team Colostomy UK, Giovanni Cinque said: “We’re delighted to be playing such a prestigious game, and as a curtain raiser to the Championship fixture between Batley and London.

“The conditions that can lead to stoma surgery are prevalent across all communities in the UK and we hope that our game with The British Asian Rugby Association will help increase awareness of our charity in West Yorkshire and how people can access support from us if they need it.

“We’re hugely grateful to Ikram and The British Asian Rugby Association for the fixture, and to everyone at Batley Bulldogs for hosting us.”

The British Asian Rugby Association - formed by Dr Ikram Butt - has a history of campaigning for equality and inclusion for Asian communities in rugby, and has delivered tangible projects which break down cultural and religious barriers and provide sporting benefits to a much under-represented minority ethnic community.

On behalf of The British Asian Rugby Association, Dr Butt said: “We are looking forward to getting back onto the playing field after a two-year absence due to a variety of reasons.

“No better way to kick off our season is to support an important cause and help make a positive difference to people’s lives.

“We would like to thank Giovanni Cinque for this wonderful opportunity and our primary sponsors Regal Food PLC and La Romantica Beds for their continued support.’’

The charity rugby match between the two teams will take place at the Fox’s Biscuit Stadium, Bradford Road, on Sunday, May 22 at 1pm.

The game will be followed by Batley Bulldogs v London Broncos at 3pm.