Bradford Bulls v Coventry Bears
Sunday 15th April 2018, 14:00pm
League 1 - Round: 7
Stats over last 2 encounters
Bradford Bulls returned to winning ways with a 52-6 victory over Coventry Bears, as recent signing, Jy Hitchcox, bagged a brace on his debut for the club.
Bulls started with a real intensity about themselves, playing quick passes up and down the line in the early stages, and Liam Johnson converted this positive play into points really quickly, when he finished in the right-hand corner.
The build-up play continued to be steady from Bradford and clearly showed what they had been working on in training.
The Bears were left chasing shadows as Bradford players stormed forward to score, with Ashley Gibson calmly scoring the second try of the game after ten minutes.
John Kear's side continued to battle with Bears in the middle of the park, in order to maintain their supremacy and the second-row pairing of James Laithwaite and Liam Johnson showed real grit and determination to hold out the Bears.
After a number of changeovers and rushed play from both sides, new centre Jy Hitchcox scored his first try for the club after a quick counter attack by the Bulls, set up by winger Ethan Ryan.
Despite conceding, a converted try, the Bulls showed no signs of losing momentum or hesitation in their play and substitute George Flanagan showed the Bulls' depth off the bench when he came on to score.
Bulls then capped off a brilliant half when Johnson scored in his second of the game.
After the break, Bradford continued to run in the points as one of the Bulls' own Ethan Ryan finished off a 12 plus pass try under the sticks. Hitchcox then got his second of the game after staying right in the action and linking up with his team-mates.
A trio of tries then capped off the game for the Bulls, with George Flanagan and kicker Joe Keyes getting a much-deserved tries, but the crowning moment of the game came six minutes from time when Elliott Minchella intercepted the ball on the 10 metre line and sprinted through the whole Coventry team to score a try that defined the Bulls' performance, as they head to Warrington Wolves in the fifth round of the Challenge Cup.
Bradford Bulls: Pickersgill, Ryan, Gibson, Hitchcox, Grant, Keyes, Chisholm, Crossley, Halafihi, Kirk, Laithwaite, Johnson and Milton.
Interchanges: Hallas, Flanagan, Bustin, Minchella.
GOALS: Keyes – 6/10
TRIES: Johnson (‘4, ‘40), Gibson (’10), Hitchcox (’22, ‘50), Flanagan (’36, ‘65), Ryan (’41), Keyes (’73), Minchella ('74)
Coventry Bears: Bass, Chapman, Pearce-Paul, Morley-Samuels, Freeman, Emanuelli, Stead, Vitalini, Williams, Thomas, Sherratt, Mason and Gray.
Interchanges: Lord, Hughes, Llyod-Jones and Guert-Jens.
GOALS: Chapman (’29)
TRIES: Stead 1/1