Jack Walker plays in Bradford win on day he left the club to join Hull KR

James Gordon
Jack Walker

New Hull KR full-back Jack Walker featured for Bradford in their Championship win over Newcastle Thunder on the eve of Magic Weekend in the city.

It was announced earlier on Friday that the former Leeds number one has signed for the Robins on a deal until the end of the season.

But he will remain available for the Bulls when not needed by Hull KR, who face Salford at St James’ Park on Saturday.

He was signed by Willie Peters as cover for first choice full-back Lachlan Coote, following the injury blow suffered by Ethan Ryan in the defeat to Wigan last week.

Walker said that he wasn’t saying farewell to Bradford and that proved to be the case, as he lined up for the Bulls barely six hours after his departure had been announced.

MORE: Hull KR confirm Jack Walker’s Super League return

Signed in the off-season from Leeds, it was Walker’s sixth appearance for Bradford and he helped them to a 28-12 win at Kingston Park.

Although he made a handful of second half errors, a smart defensive play by Walker helped to halt a searing Alex Donaghy break for the hosts when they trailed by just 10 in the final quarter.

Shortly after that, man of the match Kieran Gill touched down in superb style to make sure of the win. He got on the end of a perfectly weighted Dec Patton grubber kick close to the line, and managed to drag the ball in and ground it just shy of the dead ball line, well spotted by the officials.

Speaking after the game, Gill said: “I was looking at the screen myself! And I thought I definitely got that. Lovely!

“It’s what we’ve been striving for. It wasn’t a full 80 minute performance, and we need to work on that next week and push. I’m satisfied, it’s a Friday night after work, and we’ve put in a good shift. It was 100% a team effort, they kept firing at us.”

Kicking off a weekend of rugby league in the city in front of the Viaplay TV cameras, it couldn’t have started much worse for Newcastle as they trailed 16-0 within 20 minutes.

David Foggin-Johnston got the first try in the corner inside six minutes and further scores from Tom Holmes and Jordan Baldwinson put the Bulls, still under the stewardship of interim coach Lee Greenwood, in command.

But in front of an attendance of 2,465, Newcastle gave themselves hope at the start of the second half through Nick Staveley’s score.

Keven Appo burst through to make it 22-6 but excellent on-loan from Hull FC hooker Denive Balmforth powered over for his third try in two games to reduce the score to 10.

Despite their efforts though, Newcastle couldn’t find a breakthrough and made life difficult for themselves by conceding numerous penalties to enable Bradford to get away from their own line.

An eighth win of the season for Bradford lifts them up to third in the Championship table, while Newcastle remain rooted to the bottom.

All 12 Super League clubs descend on the city for the Magic Weekend on Saturday and Sunday, with all six games televised live by Sky Sports.

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