No easy ride for Dogs with Halifax up next

Batley Bulldogs boss Matt Diskin says that his side are ready to put the 44-6 defeat to French side Toulouse behind them as they take on Halifax RLFC at Mount Pleasant this Sunday (3pm), writes BEN McKENNA.

Diskin was not surprised by the quality of Toulouse in Saturday’s game but feels that his side did not play to the level that they had reached in pre-season.

He said: “The game can’t come soon enough for us, we want to put to bed the bad loss that we had last weekend.

“We knew Toulouse were going to be good, it is very disappointing from our point of view, we put nothing into practice that we had done throughout pre-season.

“We were very poor in a lot of departments, Toulouse were very clinical in the numerous opportunities that we gave them and we were just not at the races on the day.

“It was tough, it is not a true reflection of our ability. We have a good group of players and it won’t set us back, we will just draw a line under it and move on.”

The former Leeds Rhinos and Bradford Bulls star is well aware of the threat that Halifax can pose and knows his team are in for a tough test at the weekend.

“Having reviewed the Halifax game from Sunday I thought they were very unlucky against Featherstone, the last try they conceded I don’t think was a try and it was a tough decision,” said Diskin.

“They play some nice rugby and they have some experienced Championship players in their squad and they are going to be a real threat, so we have to make sure we have recovered from last weekend’s disappointment.”

Diskin still believes that his team will be very tough to beat and feels the performance at Toulouse did not reflect his squad’s capabilities.

He said: “We know as a coaching staff and as a group of players that if we deliver what we practice we can be a very, very tough team to beat.

“We need to address some of the issues that cost us last week and move on and look forward to a tough, competitive game against Halifax.”

The Bulldogs coach feels that it is too early for his side to make any statements regarding their top-four credentials and insists his players will simply take things one game at a time.

“I don’t think this week is about making statements, we know that Halifax are in contention to be in that top four, as are we and many other sides,” he added.

“It is a good competition this year and there will be many teams in that mix, for us it is about delivering what we practice and taking it one game at a time.”

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