Ahead of his side’s Carnegie Challenge Cup fifth round tie against Wigan Warriors at Grattan Stadium, Odsal, on Sunday May 22 (3.30pm), Bradford Bulls second row Ian Sibbitt says he is dreaming of helping the Bulls progress and go all the way to Wembley.
Wigan-born Sibbitt scored his first try for the Bulls during their narrow victory over local rivals Halifax in the last round of the cup and while he hasn’t enjoyed much success against the Warriors in recent years, the elusiveness of a Cup final appearance remains a major driving force for a forward who has fallen at the Challenge Cup’s penultimate hurdle on three occasions.
“The game against Wigan is going to be massive for us. I’m a Wigan lad and I live a stone’s throw from their ground so I always enjoy playing against them,” said Sibbitt.
“All my friends around where I live are Wigan fans so it would be really good for me to get some bragging rights as I haven’t had too much to shout about versus them in the last few years.
“I’ve lost in three Challenge Cup semi-finals and I’ve never made it beyond that stage. Playing at Wembley in the final is one of the things I want to do before I retire and it would be a dream come true for me.
“We’ve got a big game to play before I can start thinking about that, though. There is no bigger test than playing against Wigan. They’re the defending Super League champions and I’m sure they’ll be looking to add the Cup to that statement.
“They’re a great side but we’re confident in our ability and if we can perform on the day then anything can happen and hopefully there will be a big crowd at the game as well so it should be a good atmosphere.”
Bradford’s fourth round tie against Halifax saw the sides share 80 points in a close fought 46-34 victory and Sibbitt believes the Bulls will need to up their performance if they plan to play any part in the remainder of the competition.
“It’s always good to be in the mix in the latter stages and the goal is always to get through the rounds,” he said. “Sometimes it doesn’t matter how you play as long as your still in the draw come the next round.
“We didn’t play at our best against Halifax. Our defence was sloppy on the day which allowed them to score a lot of points and at any level of competition if you don’t get your defence right and concede 34 points then you make life hard for yourself. Thankfully our attack was able to make up for it.
“We’re working hard in training to correct our errors and work on all the issues that have cropped up during recent games so we’re always trying to improve our performance and we’ll need to be better at the weekend.”
Tickets for the Carnegie Challenge Cup fourth round tie, Bradford Bulls v Wigan Warriors at Grattan Stadium, Odsal on Sunday May 22 (3.30pm) cost from £15 adult, £10 concession and £5 juniors and are available by calling the ticket office on 0844 871 1490.
Tickets for the Carnegie Challenge Cup Final at Wembley on Saturday August 27 are available by calling 0844 856 1113 or visiting
For more information about the Carnegie Challenge Cup visit www.carnegiechallengecup.co.uk