Mark Moxon praises ‘professionalism’ as Batley Bulldogs set up 1895 Cup quarter final tie at Sheffield Eagles

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Batley Bulldogs’ head coach Mark Moxon has praised his side’s “professionalism” after their 36-0 victory at Hunslet set up an 1895 Cup quarter final clash with Sheffield Eagles.

A hat-trick from Joe Burton against his former club, as well as a double from Dane Manning and efforts from Ben White and James Brown, secured Batley’s last-eight spot in the competition they were runners-up in last season.

Moxon said: “I was really pleased with how it went today. We were really professional in how we went about our business. And to concede no points against a good team that challenged Keighley last week, I was delighted with that.

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“I was really delighted with the professionalism of that performance. We spoke about dropping off in the friendly games and last week against Workington where we went off the boil a little bit but we were on it for the full 80 minutes today.

Mark Moxon, back centre, watches on as Batley Bulldogs prepare at Hunslet.Mark Moxon, back centre, watches on as Batley Bulldogs prepare at Hunslet.
Mark Moxon, back centre, watches on as Batley Bulldogs prepare at Hunslet.

“We did our prep on Hunslet. They were very good last week against a good Keighley team. We were impressed with them and I thought they were good again today. They hung onto us when we were good. They kept the game competitive throughout and that’s credit to them.”

He added: “There is definitely a belief in the group now. There is a belief in the group that we can compete against the best teams in the Championship. So I guess when you are playing League 1 opposition in games like this, you should go out there and dominate which I think we did for large parts of the game.

“I think we reduced the amount of good ball they had because we were so good in D and we completed our sets. Professional is the word because we played in the right areas of the field at the right time.

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“We probably left a few points out there where we didn’t manage to get over the line but I am happy with the performance.”

Burton managed to get over the line three times himself, against his former employers.

“I thought Joe was excellent,” Moxon said after the back’s terrific treble. “I haven’t played him much on the wing since he’s been here, he’s played in the centre or at full back. I thought I’d look at him on the wing today and he was very good indeed.

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“He took those tries very well. He has got great feet, we know that, but he is quick as well. When he got his opportunities he took them.”

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He added: “I have just spoke to his Dad. Joe and Oli are both in our group and they were both here last year. Hunslet deserve some credit for what they have done for their development. They have played a big part in giving them game time to the standard they are at now.”

The Bulldogs are now two victories away from a successive Wembley final appearance and will travel to Sheffield Eagles in the quarter finals, with the winners facing an away trip at York or Oldham in the semi finals.

Moxon said: “That was part of our prep. We spoke about getting the win today to being only two games away from Wembley.

“Because of the format, anyone you get is going to be good opposition. It is going to be difficult but we are starting to look like a team. Bring it on.”