Featherstone hold off strong Bulldogs challenge

Featherstone Rovers faced a stiff challenge from Batley Bulldogs today at the Millennium Stadium, but they managed to fight back in the latter stages of the game to triumph 30-22, putting them into the third round of the Betfred Challenge Cup and the semi-final of the AB Sundecks 1895 Cup.

The Bulldogs took an early lead through Dale Morton, but Rovers replied quickly through forward Brad Day, while winger Ben Blackmore scored their second try to give them the lead.

Rovers increased their lead when Fa’amanu Brown stepped through the defence to make it 14-6, while his offload then sent in Kris Welham to the corner for their fourth try to make it 18-6, with Craig Hall only having converted one try.

Batley replied, however, when Elliot Hall touched down a Morton kick to the line, with Morton’s try reducing the half-time deficit to six points.

And the scores were level soon after half-time, when Tom Gilmore’s smart pass saw Luke Hooley touch down.
And the Bulldogs were in front 22-18 when Jonny Campbell struggled to take a high pass on the left wing, but was able to kick the dropping ball to the line before chasing through to touch down.

But Rovers had something in reserve and when Dane Chisholm took a hand he popped up the ball up for James Harrison, who scored under the posts. And substitute Dean Parata settled the issue when he took Harrison’s pass and was too quick for the Batley defence, leaving Hall with a simple conversion to make it 30-22 at the final hooter.

A full report with photos from this game will feature in Monday’s issue of League Express. Get your copy from your newsagent, or you can subscribe to the print or digital version of the newspaper by going here.