Batley Bulldogs coach John Kear has urged his players to enjoy arguably the standout tie of their entire Qualifiers campaign this evening: a dream trip to Headingley to face Super League champions Leeds Rhinos.
The Bulldogs are still mathematically in the hunt for the Million Pound Game, having picked up a crucial 11-10 win at home to Featherstone last weekend which moved them level on points with fifth-placed London Broncos.
And as they prepare to make the short trip across West Yorkshire to play in front of a five-figure crowd at Headingley this evening, Kear wants his players to enjoy the experience – not fear it.
“Some of our blokes will go through Turnstile F on a Friday at Headingley, but they’ll go through the players’ entrance this time,” Kear said.
“They need to savour every second of it.”
Kear watched his side claim a priceless win last Sunday – which could be worth an extra £50,000 in prize money come the end of the Qualifiers: but stressed it was simply not about cash.
“It was not about the money,” he said.
“We built that one up as the battle of the part-time teams in the Qualifiers. We have come out on top and I am absolutely delighted for the players.”