Kingstone Press Championship preview: Doncaster v Batley Bulldogs

Doncaster are still without a win in the Championship and were knocked out of the Challenge Cup by North Wales Crusaders.

“The players are hurting,” said coach Paul Cooke.

“It’s a bit like Groundhog Day on a Tuesday with regards to our reviews and what we’re talking about and the things we need to fix up.

“We’ve got to fix them up quickly, the players are aware of that. Discipline both with and without the ball is a bit of a problem for us at the minute.

“Having moved Good Friday’s game against Sheffield to Wednesday evening so we have a longer recovery between the long journey to Whitehaven on Monday, our Easter starts here.

“We’ve got a big game against a very good Batley team and that’s all we’re focused on at the minute. I watched their game against Bradford and they were minutes from beating the favourites for the competition so we’re going to have it all on.”

John Kear’s Batley side are coming off a comfortable Cup win against Normanton Knights.

“It was a good game for us,” he said.

“It didn’t take too much out of our players, which is pleasing because obviously energy-wise we’re entering a really difficult period of the season.

“Last year some would say that Doncaster were the surprise package of the season. They finished fourth in the Championship, which was a heck of an achievement, but obviously their season hasn’t started yet.

“The danger for us is, it’s going to start at some stage and our challenge is to make sure it’s not this week!”

Second row Brad Hey is likely to sit this game out having been concussed last week.

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