Super League side Castleford Tigers have entered a dual-registration partnership with Championship club Batley Bulldogs for 2024.
Tigers fringe players will be registered with the Bulldogs for 2024, but they won’t be able to play for both clubs during a scheduled round.
Castleford head coach Lingard, who spent four seasons as Batley boss between 2020 and 2023, said: “I think it’s really important for our players if they aren’t playing first team for us, then they’re playing in competitive games elsewhere and I think the best place they can play is the Championship.
“Batley have proven over the last three or four seasons that they’re a top-end Championship club and have been competing up there for the play-offs and last year a Wembley final as well. Hopefully it will help our players and hopefully help Batley out as well along the way.
“I think some of the guys who maybe haven’t played Championship before might not have realised how tough that game is. It’s a little bit slower than what Super League is, and the contact area and wrestle area is sometimes more physical than what Super League is.
“I think certainly for our younger guys who are still trying to cement themselves in the first team are going out and getting some real good experience in the top-end Championship is going to be vital for them and hopefully benefit them and benefit us long-term as a club.
“I’ve worked with Mark Moxon (Batley head coach) closely as an assistant coach to me being a head coach so we’re on the same wavelength. I know what he likes and he knows what I like to do as well and I won’t force any players on him and he has to play two or three of our players.
“If it doesn’t work for him or if it doesn’t work for Batley that week then it’s not going to be right for our players to go there. But we’ve got a real good working relationship, and we can be open and honest about which players are going to benefit Batley.”
Batley Bulldogs boss Mark Moxon believes dual-registration partnership with Castleford Tigers will benefit both clubs
Bulldogs boss Mark Moxon said: “The dual-registration agreement will work well for us and Castleford this year. Clearly Linners and I have a good working relationship and both understand each others philosophies.
“A few players at Cas are already a part of our family at the Bulldogs and if they were to play for us the transition would be seamless.
“Any other players that are made available would have to make us stronger for us to take them. In return, we hope to give the Tigers players some needed game time, at a high standard within a good culture up at The Fox’s Biscuits Stadium.”