Batley Bulldogs coach Craig Lingard encouraged by pre-season win at Championship rivals Bradford Bulls

Coach Craig Lingard was impressed with the “desire and attitude” shown by his Batley Bulldogs side as they began their pre-season campaign with a 28-22 win at Bradford Bulls.

Friday, 14th January 2022, 12:05 am

Bulldogs beat their Betfred Championship rivals despite Covid problems in the camp which contributed to their planned Boxing Day derby against Dewsbury Rams being called off and also led to limited preparation for the trip to Odsal.

Lingard’s side fought back from an early 12-0 deficit and he said: “For 80 per cent of the game I was really pleased with how they applied themselves.

“We started the game okay, in the first five or 10 minutes and then just got a bit soft. The tries we conceded were soft and sloppy and not necessarily what you’d expect from us, particularly given how we defended our line last year.

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"That was disappointing, but the second half was a lot better - we showed a lot of desire and our attitude was first class. I was really pleased, particularly after the lack of preparation leading up to the game.”

Perry Whiteley (ankle) and Jonny Campbell (shoulder) are being assessed after picking up knocks during the game, but neither injury is believed to be long term.

Bulldogs travel to another Championship side Widnes Vikings for their second warm-up match on Sunday and complete their pre-season campaign at Super League Huddersfield Giants a week later.