Bulldogs cling on to make it seven in a row

Bulldogs cling on to make it seven in a row

BATLEY BULLDOGS held off a late Dewsbury fightback to retain the Roy Powell Trophy, winning 16-10 in an entertaining Boxing Day derby watched by over 1,700 fans.

Tries from Dave Scott and Johnny Campbell, plus a Scott goal, saw the hosts 10-0 up at half-time.

Though Dewsbury went over through Lucas Walshaw and Sam Day in the second half, Paul Sykes with one goal, it was Michael Ward’s score on the hour which proved to be the difference.

Playing up the ‘hill’ at Mount Pleasant, Batley enjoyed the better of the opening exchanges and broke the deadlock through Scott on three minutes, who got on the end of a Dane Manning and Dom Brambani combination to go over.

Scott converted to make it 6-0 and the Rams were immediately up against it with Jode Sheriffe and Toby Richardson both subbed early on through injury.

Batley could have extended their lead soon after, but a Brambani score was ruled out for offside.

With Jordan Andrade making an impression off the bench, the Rams upped their game as half-time approached, but it was Batley who scored next; Campbell breaking upfield before getting on the end of a slick set of passing to go over wide on the left.

Scott couldn’t make the difficult conversion to leave the hosts 10-0 up at half time.

Lee Greenwood’s charges flew out of the blocks in the second half and got the try their efforts deserved, with the sizeable Walshaw bursting over on 52 minutes.

Sykes failed with his conversion attempt before Ward struck back for Batley on the hour mark, bagging the hosts’ third try of the afternoon beside the posts. Scott made it 16-4 with the boot.

The Rams were down but not out as the final quarter unfolded, and they dug deep to find a way back into the contest. A dangerous run from Sam Day saw him stride over, and Sykes goaled to make it 16-10 with eight minutes to play.

And with the clock ticking down to the final hooter, the Rams had one final chance to level it. Adam Ryder stole the ball from Scott, but Sam Smeaton produced a crucial tackle and the effort was ruled out for double movement, meaning Batley hung on for a seventh consecutive Boxing Day triumph.

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