Crucial clash looms for determined Bulldogs

BATLEY BULLDOGS face a vital home game against Doncaster on Sunday, with John Kear’s side desperate to end their eight-match losing run.

The Bulldogs, who are second-bottom of the Championship table, take on the winless Dons who have lost their last 23 matches.

With four games remaining until the competition splits into the ‘Super Eights’, Batley are a point behind Workington Town and two adrift of Hunslet Hawks in ninth.

Kear’s side last won on on May 10, recording a 23-10 victory away at Workington.

Since then they’ve gone on to lose seven straight league games and a Challenge Cup clash at Widnes Vikings.

Last week’s performance at former Super League giants Bradford Bulls showed signs of encouragement, despite the 34-16 scoreline at Odsal.

“I can’t fault their attitude which was exemplified by some of the scramble defence which defused some dangerous

situations in the first half and we played some good rugby as well,” said coach Kear.

“The level of performance has gone up a lot from last week to this week, but it’s not for your Bradfords, Leighs and Londons that we have to do it, it’s for the Hunslets, Doncasters, Workingtons and Whitehavens.”

This week’s opponents Doncaster’s last success was a 39-18 victory at home to Halifax on August 31 last year.

Meanwhile, the Mount Pleasant club hope to be able to unveil their new digital scoreboard at Sunday’s game.

The new facility still needs to be fully set up so it will not be used as the official scoreboard at the Doncaster clash, but it will hopefully be in position behind the Glen Tomlinson Stand showing some of its functions for fans to observe.

With club sponsors Morley Waste Traders contributing a large percentage of the funding and supporters also chipping in thanks to a sponsored bike ride to the Summer Bash in Blackpool, club officials say they are also going to buy speakers at extra cost to improve the scoreboard further.

The Bulldogs hope to have it fully operational in time for the upcoming Hunslet game.

• Second-rower Tom Thackeray has joined Swinton on a one-month loan. The Bulldogs agreed to let the 22-year-old play with the Lions in a bid to get more game time.

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