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Sunday 3rd February 2013, 15:00
Super League - Round: 1
Round: 1 Official: B Thaler Venue: Provident Stadium, Odsal
Head to Head
|At Provident Stadium||Last 8 Meetings||Away from Home|
|WIN 40-6, 03/02/2013|
|WIN 18-36, 25/02/2012|
|WIN 34-26, 24/06/2012||LOST 26-14, 09/09/2011|
|WIN 40-18, 06/03/2011||WIN 10-29, 14/05/2010|
|WIN 38-28, 22/08/2010|
|WIN 36-22, 07/06/2009|
Magic Weekend fixtures will display as either home or away
Stats over last 8 encounters
In this the first Bulls Eye of the season, Head Coach Francis Cummins looks ahead to Sunday’s game at the Provident Stadium as the Bulls get ready to face Richard Agar’s Wakefield Trinity Wildcats.
HOW READY ARE YOU FOR THE START OF THE SEASON?
“Well we’ll certainly find out on Sunday, wont we? The lads are in a really good place at the moment. They have had some good hit ups in pre season and they can’t wait. We have had a week of training in the snow and now we’ve been able to get on a bit of green stuff and it’s a nice change.”
FROM WHERE YOU CAME FROM LAST YEAR, WOULD YOU SETTLE FOR A STRAIGHT FORWARD YEAR OR SOMETHING HIGHER?
“I don’t think there is such a thing as a straight forward year in any sport. It’s managing your hopes and expectations. The spine of my squad achieved a lot last year because out of bad things you gain experience. That’s what I’ve been saying to the team; in our profession that is professionalism. What we did last year is how it needs to be again and it will be part of the kit bag. If we’ve got that and we stick together then we are going to look teams up, enjoy some wins and look at the losses and see how we can improve. I have a group of real hungry young men who want to get better and I am one of them.”
We are all striving for that next step. The average age of the squad is only 24 and I have some players in there who can achieve England level and get into the World Cup Squad but they are going to make some sacrifices and work harder and smarter than they have ever done before to achieve it and if they do then I’ll keep them welcome at our club. ”
It always gets tougher. Some of the training the players have to do now just to stay healthy is amazing. We spend a hell of a lot of time now just to balance out athletes and do as much as we can just to lower the risk of injuries. But ultimately there are car crashes in every tackle and there is only so much we can do but we need to keep going at it because we need to keep them fit and on the field.”
IT’S WAKEFIELD WILDCATS FIRST UP. HOW DO YOU SEE THAT AS AN OPENING FIXTURE?
It will be tough. They have been together a while now and we were in a similar position to where they were at the start of last season. I don’t think we had it as tough as Richard did when he took over but we are in that little bit of unknown. We have had a couple of decent hit outs in the Trials but this is the competition now and we need to get the points now. They showed their spirit last year and their run in at the end of the year was really good. We need to get off to a good start and it is going to be a tough local derby.
They will want to keep the form going they had at the end of the season. They won’t want a slow start like last year. They will want a great start and they, like us, will be looking to take it further this time. But we want a great start too and we’ve got to get amongst them.”
WHAT WOULD YOU SETTLE FOR AT THE END OF THIS YEAR?
“That’s a difficult question. At this moment in time who knows where we can take them. I have said to the boys that if we give 100%, give it everything we’ve got and we can sit down and say we have done that then I will be happy. What I can’t have is if we get to the end of and it’s a case of ‘if only’. That’s what kills you and really gets to you. I could understand if we were the worst team in the Comp but we had all given 100% and played to the best of our ability. If we do that then we won’t be. It’s an ongoing thing really and I don’t think we can set ourselves numbers and places to get to because with the size of the squad a few injuries could hurt my team a lot more than say some of the Top Four because they have other options and players who can move around for them. With us, we have to be really lucky and we all know we will have to over perform again.
Heath L’Estrange and Jamie Langley are fit to return and have been named in the Bulls 19-man Squad to face Wakefield Wildcats on Sunday.
Langley missed the two Trial games through injury but has now recovered and is included in the squad. Heath L’Estrange, who missed Danny McGuire’s Testimonial game with an ankle injury, is also included. There is no place for either Luke Gale or John Bateman who are still not fit enough for selection.
The Squad in full is: James Donaldson, Adam Sidlow, Michael Platt, Manase Manuokafoa, Jamie Langley, Matt Diskin, Brett Kearney, Nick Scruton, Heath L’Estrange, Matty Blythe, Keith Lulia, Elliot Whitehead, Elliot Kear, Jarrod Sammut, Danny Addy, Tom Olbison, Chev Walker, Jobe Murphy, Jamie Foster
CHEV WALKER needs 2 Tries for a career total of 100. He has scored 98 Tries for Leeds, Hull KR, Gt Britain, England and Bradford Bulls.
MATTY BLYTHE needs 4 points for a career total of 100. He has scored 24 Tries in 72 games for Warrington Wolves and Leigh Centurions
Bulls 19 Man Squad
- James Donaldson
- Adam Sidlow
- Michael Platt
- Manase Manuokafoa
- Jamie Langley
- Matt Diskin C
- Brett Kearney
- Nick Scruton
- Heath L’Estrange C
- Matty Blythe
- Keith Lulia
- Elliot Whitehead
- Elliot Kear
- Jarrod Sammut
- Danny Addy
- Tom Olbison
- Chev Walker
- Jobe Murphy
- Jamie Foster