Potential history-maker Ben White would swap record books for solitary piece of silverware with Batley Bulldogs

Ben White is agonisingly close to having his name etched into the Batley Bulldogs’ record books.
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Since joining the club in 2020, the versatile back, incredibly, has played in every single competitive fixture. Up to press, that’s 102 consecutive games that he has not missed. Not. One.

It’s an astonishing feat which means he is tantalisingly close to the Batley record of 103 consecutive appearances made by Richard Price between June 1996 and March 2000.

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Two more appearances, in round one of the Championship season at home to Featherstone Rovers and at home to Castleford Tigers, now led by former Batley head coach Craig Lingard, in the Challenge Cup sixth round, and the current popular stalwart will have the honour all to himself.

Ben White in action for Batley BulldogsBen White in action for Batley Bulldogs
Ben White in action for Batley Bulldogs

“It’s a nice milestone and potentially a bit of history being written for me,” the mild-mannered White said. “When you are in the mix of it, you don’t think of it but when you look at some of the players on that list, to be amongst some of those names is really humbling.”

Having come through the Leeds Rhinos academy, London-born White had spells at Swinton, Halifax and Barrow before finally finding “home” at Batley, where he has helped the Bulldogs to a Championship play-off semi-final, a Championship Grand Final at Leigh and the 1895 Cup final at Wembley - all in the last three seasons.

However, he would instantly exchange his name being in the history books for a medal around his neck and a piece of the silverware in the trophy cabinet at Mount Pleasant.

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He said: “Looking back on my career, the consecutive appearances is a nice milestone to have, but I want to win something. We have been unfortunate over the past few years. We got to the semi-final, the Grand Final and then to Wembley last year. But we lost all three.

Ben White scores a try for Batley in their 1895 Cup win at Hunslet in February.Ben White scores a try for Batley in their 1895 Cup win at Hunslet in February.
Ben White scores a try for Batley in their 1895 Cup win at Hunslet in February.

“I would really like to win something. That is something you can hang your hat on as a player because you go out there to win everything as a player and create memories. And I’d like to do that here as I bounced about the Championship at various clubs before finding my home at Batley.”

But what is the secret to playing over 100 consecutive games?

“Well I’m not on the tools like a lot of the lads,” revealed estate agent White, who works for Rochdale firm Reside Estate Agency, a sponsor of the town’s rugby league side, which were beaten by Batley in the fourth round of the Challenge Cup last month.

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“It is a little bit less load-bearing on the joints. My boss used to play for Rochdale so there has always been a connection rugby-wise. He is really lenient with needing to nip off for training and I am really appreciative of the flex that he allows me to have.”

Ben White in action for Batley Bulldogs.Ben White in action for Batley Bulldogs.
Ben White in action for Batley Bulldogs.

He added: “The beauty I may have is that I can play a lot of positions so if I am not number one in one spot I can sort of fill in elsewhere depending on injuries and stuff.

“It’s a running joke that I don't excel in any position; I am the six or seven out of ten in any position!

“I have also played with a couple of niggles here and there but I try to look after myself away from the club. The medical staff are great and the coaches and conditioners know when to push us. They are really on top.

“I have just been fortunate not to pick up any serious injuries and, touchwood, hopefully I don’t pick up any soon.”