17th April 2017, 19:37
A GAME OF TWO HALVES, AS BRADFORD'S FIGHT BACK ISN'T ENOUGH
BRADFORD Bulls fell to another tough defeat, after battling through a tough Easter period, against Halifax and Featherstone Rovers.
The Bulls second encounter of the bank holiday weekend, saw Leigh Beattie’s side take on third placed Featherstone Rovers in the eleventh round of the Kingstone Press Championship.
The game of two halves, saw Featherstone rovers capitalise on an early lead that was generated in the first half, too far ahead for the Bulls to form a come-back.
The opening try came from Misi Taulapapa, scoring an Ethan Ryan-esc try in the corner, almost being forced into touch, credit to the veteran after Caro’s best efforts to prevent the winger from scoring.
Following suit of the captain, Featherstone began to develop their lead through Joshua Hardcastle, Scott Turner, Andy Bostock and Cory Aston, kicking and touching down to aid the Rovers victory.
Featherstone’s refreshed squad, after revolving their side since the narrow defeat to Hull KR on Good Friday night, took advantage of a weary Bradford team, punching the ball in hard up the middle.
Despite Bradford suffering a lack of control in the first half, the visitors did not give in, as their grit and determination was highlighted through their domination in the second half.
Ross Oakes opened the scoring for the Bulls, intercepting Anthony Thackeray on the half way mark, charging his way to the try line, with the scrum-half in pursuit.
Shortly after, Bradford conceded a weak try as Darrell Griffin forced his way over the line in response to the Bulls score.
Bradford’s efforts and mental discipline aided the Bulls fight back, as two Featherstone Rovers players, Misi Taulapapa and Andy Bostock were sent to the sin bin at different times. Allowing Bradford to capitalise on the men deficit.
Ross Oakes struck again, as the centre was on the end of Oscar Thomas’ perfectly weighted kick over the top. Omari Caro tipped down for the academy graduate to score his second of the afternoon.
Brandan Wilkinson’s effort in defence saw the Bulls win a penalty, as the youngster forced a handling error from the former Bull, Richard Moore, allowing the Bulls to start on the Rovers 20 metre line.
Omari Caro finished off the scoring of the busy afternoon, as a fast piece of play from the Bulls in front of the Featherstone defensive line, saw Omari Caro receive a pass from Oakes, allowing the winger to walk in for four.
Oscar Thomas converted every opportunity the Scotland-international had in front of him, continuing his impressive run of form from the tee.
Bradford next face Toulouse Olympique in the twelfth round of the Kingstone Press Championship on 29th April.
The Bulls will take advantage of this Challenge Cup weekend break, to recoup following a challenging Easter period.
BRADFORD BULLS: Johnny Campbell, Iliess Macani, Ross Oakes, Ethan Ryan, Omari Caro, Thomas, Keyes, Magrin, Moore, Kirk, Bentley, Larroyer, Wilkinson.
Interchanges: Halafihi, Davies, Hodgson, Tomlinson
GOALS: Thomas (3)
TRIES: Oakes (43’, 65’), Caro (77’)
FEATHERSTONE ROVERS: Ian Hardman, Misi Taulapapa, Chris Ulugia, Josh Hardcastle, Scott Turner, Anthony Thackeray, Ashton, Luke Cooper, Keal Carlile, Richard Moore, Michael Knowles, John Davies, James Lockwood.
Interchanges: Darrell Griffin, Matty Wildie, Jack Ormondroyd, Andy Bostock.
GOALS: Aston (6)
TRIES: Taulapapa (2’), Hardcastle (12’), Tunrer (14’, 35’), Bostock (30’), Aston (32’, 38’), Griffin (48’)