Bulldogs make Bowman signing but miss out on dual-registration deal

Batley Bulldogs have signed experienced former Halifax and Oldham utility Anthony Bowman.

The 27-year-old has linked up with Craig Lingard’s squad having completed some work commitments and is expected to feature in their pre-season matches this month.

Lingard (pictured) said: “Anthony has a lot of experience and what he wants to do now is try and string some games together.

“He only played nine for Oldham last year, but before that he’d been in Australia and played regularly there.

“He can cover a number of positions. We’re down to one recognised halfback with Ben White injured and he can drop in there, at centre and back row.

“But predominantly I see him playing loose forward for us.”

Lingard says the signing – and further recruitment – has become more important for his squad after a planned dual-registration partnership with Hull FC did not materialise.

Lingard believed an agreement between the clubs had been reached, but the Black and Whites are instead set to link with Bradford Bulls.

He explained: “We’ve missed out on the dual-registration with Hull and they’re going with Bradford.

“I thought it was all done and dusted, but something must have happened over their way and they’ve changed their mind.

“We’ll have to move forward under our own steam, but when you think something like that is in place it does affect your recruitment.

“There’s stuff we’ve not done in the last month that we would have done, and we need to start that process of being a bit more active about bringing players in.”

Lewis Galbraith hopes to return from an ankle injury for the final pre-season game against Huddersfield, while prop Jo Taira is now back in full training after having recovered from an illness over Christmas.