Rams suffer Bulls backlash

DEWSBURY RAMS failed to deal with Bradford Bulls’ Kris Welham who went over five times in what was a dominant 52-18 win for the Odsal outfit as they put an end to their recent poor run of form in the Championship and got revenge for their recent Challenge Cup defeat at the Tetley’s Stadium.

The Bulls were knocked out of the Challenge Cup following a single-point defeat to Dewsbury less than a month ago, but any hopes the hosts had of a second shock win were extinguished during the early stages of the second half during which the Bulls crossed for three tries in quick succession.

James Lowes’ men looked dangerous on the break throughout the contest, but they were made to work hard for their half-time lead.

The Rams made the perfect start to the game, crossing in the second minute following a right to left move that resulted in Jason Crookes providing a delayed ball to Dalton Grant, who crashed over in the corner.

Paul Sykes added the extras and Dewsbury held a six-point advantage for ten minutes, before Kris Welham broke from halfway on the first play following the scrum, shaking off the tackle of Andy Kain and beating cover full-back Josh Guzdek to score.

Danny Addy kicked an excellent conversion to level the scores but the Rams were back in front following a frenetic period of play, during which possession was conceded on numerous occasions by both sides.

A decision to run the ball on the last tackle in the 22nd minute proved to be the correct one, as Joel Farrell forced his way over from short range for Sykes to again convert.

The Bulls found an instant response as Welham stormed onto a flat pass to sprint over the line after Gaskell had gone close, but the conversion was missed, preserving the hosts’ narrow lead.

Heading into the final five minutes of the first half the Rams were good value for their lead, but a misplaced pass just moments before half-time was snapped up by Lee Gaskell, who raced 80 metres for a score, which he converted to give the Bulls a 12-14 interval lead.

And the visitors made the perfect start to the second half, as Shane Grady’s palm back was straight into the path of Omari Caro, who raced 80 metres to score.

He crossed for a carbon copy of his first try moments later after a Rams pass went to ground.

With their tails up, Bradford went further in front when Jay Pitts dummied and broke through midfield before sending Alex Mellor over. The Rams were dealt a further blow when Sykes was forced to withdraw injured.

Indiscipline began to creep into the Rams’ performance, and the Bulls capitalised by adding three further tries in the final 15 minutes, all scored by Welham.

The former Hull KR centre strolled over after the Rams were caught short of numbers on the right, and he snapped up Adam O’Brien’s last-gasp offload to make it four tries.

He added a fifth with three  minutes remaining following a burst through the middle from 20 metres out.

The Rams added a consolation with the last play of the game after Kain’s reverse flick pass sent Farrell over for an easy second score.

Heading into the break for the Challenge Cup, Lowes and his players will take a huge amount of confidence from the nature of their victory at the Tetley’s Stadium and, with dryer months ahead, should not be written off in the race for promotion to Super League.

The Rams, meanwhile, continue to struggle against a crippling injury list totalling 11 players, and head coach Glenn Morrison was also without Etu Uaisele and Jonny Walker, who were both ineligible to face their parent club having joined on loan earlier this month.

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