Diskin could make Bulldogs changes for Eagles clash

Batley captain Dominic Brambani leads the Bulldogs out before the 300th game of his career against Featherstone Rovers last Sunday.
Batley captain Dominic Brambani leads the Bulldogs out before the 300th game of his career against Featherstone Rovers last Sunday.

Batley coach Matt Diskin admits he will not be afraid to ring the changes as the Bulldogs travel to Belle Vue to face Sheffield Eagles on Sunday (ko 3pm).

Diskin has brought in fresh ideas and wants the Bulldogs to play different style of rugby this season but it is taking time for some players to adjust.

The Bulldogs suffered a disappointing 32-6 defeat to Featherstone Rovers last week and Diskin knows his side must bounce back against Sheffield.

Adam Gledhill is fit again and comes into contention for his first game of the season, while Joel Farrell was expected to be given the all clear following close season surgery and could be in line to make his Batley debut against Sheffield following his switch across the valley from neighbours Dewsbury Rams.

Diskin said: “I am trying to get them to play a different brand of rugby this year.

“We are not seeing it at the moment, mainly because of our ill-discipline with head high tackles and poor tackle technique.

“It is frustrating because we get into good field position and then gift them the ball back straight away.

“No matter what kind of rugby you are trying to play, it is hard to do it when you haven’t got the ball and you give field position away as easily as we are doing at the moment.

“We have got some great individuals, but we’ve got to start playing as a team more. We need to get back to basics and doing them well. If the current team I am picking can’t do it, I have got a big enough squad to find the right combination to do it going forward.”

Batley dominated the early stages against Featherstone but were unable to break a water tight defence and Rovers went on to run in five tries to record a third straight victory.

Diskin was disappointed with his side’s overall display and added: “I thought Featherstone were better in every area.

“We had a lot of ball early on in the first half and we were blunt really, we were really lateral.

“We knew where Featherstone were weak at certain points, but I don’t think we got to them once in that first 20 minutes.

“We needed to be more direct. When you are lateral like we were it is easy to defend against and Featherstone kept us out comfortably because we didn’t challenge them with the ball.”

Sheffield have also won one of their opening three games as they suffered a 26-10 defeat to Oldham and lost 42-16 at Halifax last week, although they earned a surprise 32-14 victory over Toulouse in their only home game.