Bulls ready for ‘star-studded’ Centurions

Bradford Bulls coach Rohan Smith hopes that his team’s hard work in winning at Sheffield last week can be continued in their Summer Bash encounter with Leigh on Saturday evening.

The two teams bring the curtain down on the first day’s action of this weekend’s Summer Bash in Blackpool.

“We had to earn the win [against Sheffield],” said Smith.

“We fought hard for the whole game and managed to come home strongly and put a few points on the board. The pleasing thing was probably the effort and the intent in the way the boys went about things.

“I’m looking forward to Summer Bash, it’s a fantastic idea and a great thing for the rugby league fan and obviously I’m looking forward to our game.

“Leigh have a star-studded line up of great English players and great Australian players –they’ve got a real roster for Championship rugby. There’s a reason why they’re flying high and it’s a good challenge for us.”

Bulls will be without stand-off Lee Gaskell who has a hamstring injury.

Leigh won 48-6 at Swinton Lions last week, and coach Neil Jukes felt that they showed good professionalism to build up for the big encounter with Bulls in Blackpool.

“In the first half we were patient and put some good sets together and had a good shape,” he said.

“We took some energy out of them as they play a high intensity game. The second half got a bit scrappy for a 15/20-minute period and we will review that. But then we got back to doing what we do best, playing rugby and defending tough.

“For us it is all about playing clean and attractive rugby and we want to be professional from the moment we enter the ground to leaving it.

“There were times when we put 6/7 sets together with a good shape and scored some outstanding tries and we want to become more consistent.

“The Summer Bash is a great concept and all the contests look evenly matched. It’s tight to get in the top four and there are some good pairings at Blackpool so we are looking forward to it.”

Willie Tonga is doubtful for the Centurions as he has a tight hamstring. Martyn Ridyard picked up a nasty facial injury last week and may also be a doubt.

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