Langley pair keeps the Bulls charging
Bradford Bulls 32 Hull KR 26
Dave Hadfield was a schoolboy convert to rugby league, the game which, one way or another, has dominated his life ever since. After working for newspapers in Shropshire and Blackpool (where he covered the fortunes of Blackpool Borough) he travelled the world, working mainly in Hong Kong and Sydney. He became The Independent's rugby league man in 1990 and has written five books on the game and broadcast extensively for Sky and the BBC. Dave played his last game at the age of 53 and would have set up a try if anyone could have been bothered supporting his break. When not writing about the sport, he now limits himself to a bit of tick and pass with his local club, the Bolton Mets. Family includes supporters - of varying degrees of dedication - of Salford, Wigan, Sheffield Eagles and St George Illawarra.
Saturday 11 August 2012
Bradford's unlikely bid to combine penury with the play-offs is still alive, despite them making heavy weather of a young and injury depleted Rovers side last night.
The Bulls are now level on points with Rovers in eighth place with three rounds of Super League to play, after their longest-serving player, Jamie Langley, was instrumental in this win with two tries.
Bradford's future is still profoundly uncertain, however.Another week of the battle for survival ended with the picture more confusing than ever, with a fourth offer for the club now apparently on the table. "It can't keep going the way it is," said the Bulls' coach, Mick Potter. "It's just a farce."
The Bulls have played very seriously during this crisis, though given the sparse crowd here it may mean the long-suffering fans have had enough. The players showed that they still have the appetite for the fight, though. After Michael Dobson had put Rovers ahead with a penalty, the Bulls crafted the game's first try with Ben Jeffries' short pass to Langley. Some ill-discipline and slack tackling allowed the Robins to respond through Scott Taylor, but Luke Gale's slide-rule kick to Shaun Ainscough restored the Bradford lead.
David Hodgson levelled the scores, with Dobson's conversion giving the Robins the edge at half-time. A messy second half saw both sides struggle for rhythm, with poor handling and dubious options. But then Jason Crookes, back from a four-month injury absence, took Keith Lulia's clever flick pass to score in the corner. Then Langley's opportunist second try on the hour all but sealed the win.
One of Rovers' young reserves, Liam Salter got one back, though, before Gale's break and Elliot Whitehead's finish did clinch it, with two Gale goals completing their scoring and rendering Craig Hall's last-minute try irrelevant.
Bradford Bulls Kearney; Ainscough, Lulia, Platt, Crookes; Jeffries, Gale; Hargreaves, L'Estrange, Kopczak, Olbison, Whitehead, Langley. Substitutes used Diskin, Manuokafoa, Walker, Burgess.
Hull KR Sheriff; Latus, Hall, Salter, D.Hodgson; Murrell, Dobson; Paea, J.Hodgson, O'Hara, Galea, Horne, Griffin. Substitutes used Taylor, Cox, Withers, Green.
Referee J Child (Dewsbury)
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