Kingstone Press Championship Preview: Batley Bulldogs v Whitehaven

Reflecting on the 56-8 defeat at Leigh Centurions, Batley Bulldogs coach John Kear was pleased with the display of certain of his players.

He said: “There were some players who actually stood up and demonstrated they could lead a group of people through actions. They obviously did themselves some good in very difficult and adverse circumstances.

“Conversely there were others who I was a little disappointed with. They didn’t relish the challenge that was laid in front of them. We learned a bit about each other within the group.

Looking ahead to Sunday he said: “It’s a big game, every game in this division is a big game. We’re playing a team that’s in and around us and obviously they’ll be fancying this game just as we are so we know we’ve really got to be ready to play. We’re at home, which is a good place to return to after the good hiding we got last week.”

Stand-off Cain Southernwood is ruled out this week with an ankle injury.

Whitehaven coach James Coyle said of their 36-12 loss at home to Featherstone Rovers last week: “In some areas we were really good but in others were a bit lax. We’re improving. Featherstone are a good team and had the edge on us in the backs – a bit more speed and precision which cost us in the end.

“Batley on Sunday is a massive game for us, we’ve got to make sure we get something out of this game if we want to progress this year. We’ve got our sights set on getting a result this weekend.”

Winger Jordan Burns could return for Whitehaven this weekend.

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