Man-of-the-match Sykes hails Rams’ effort after Bash success

Paul Sykes praised Dewsbury's efforts in defeating Batley at the Summer Bash.
Paul Sykes praised Dewsbury's efforts in defeating Batley at the Summer Bash.

Man-of-the-Match Paul Sykes praised the effort of his Dewsbury Rams teammates as they recorded a third successive win over rivals Batley at last Sunday’s Summer Bash.

squad on the morning of the match but helped Dewsbury fight back from 12-4 down to record a 13-12 win.

Speaking after the match, Sykes said: “The drop goal won it but the other guys did all the hard work.

“I came on as a substitute late on as I have been struggling with my knee and it was decided to give me a breather.

“Credit to the boys, they have dug really deep as we have had some tough games against Batley.

“I wasn’t down to play but when the lads were short I put my hands up and I’m glad I did.

“I tried to keep us calm and to cut out the errors and I thought we defended really well and forced some errors ourselves.

“We have shot ourselves in the foot a few times and have thrown leads away but we stuck on to one here.”

Bulldogs captain Dominic Brambani was hugely disappointed with his side’s display as they allowed a 12-4 lead to slip away.

Brambani said: “I’m absolutely gutted but we weren’t good enough.

“We went in at half-time with a lead but the way we played in the second half was absolutely terrible, me included.

“It was a scrappy game all the way through but we were genuinely in control in the first half.

“We came out in the second half and scored the breakaway try but then I don’t know what happened, we just weren’t good enough.

“You can’t win games when you are defending so much and we did too much defending.

“This is a massive derby and they have beaten us three times now.

“We are going to have to go back, look at what we did wrong and brush ourselves off for next week.”

Bulldogs coach Matt Diskin echoed his captain’s thoughts in what he felt was a poor advert for the Championship.

Diskin added: “I’m a bit embarrassed. It was a terrible game to watch as a coach from my team but it must have been for the people watching.

“The tempo of the game was excruciatingly slow but it worked for Dewsbury who lulled us into it, but we were poor.

“We lost our composure and made some poor decisions and I’m not a happy coach at the moment.”

Dewsbury counterpart Neil Kelly was delighted after masterminding a third straight derby win over the Bulldogs.

Kelly added: “It was a tough game but all credit to my lads, they have dug in, been patient and got their rewards.

“When we dropped the goal with 20 minutes to go, I was thinking that will not be the point that wins the game but with a good defensive effort we saw the game out.”

Kelly was also full of praise for club captain Sykes, who answered an 11th hour call to be included in the squad and produced a superb display, despite only being introduced a second half substitute.

Kelly added: “Lots of credit to him. He’s not fully fit but he has come in and seen us home.”

Victory saw Dewsbury close within two points of third-bottom Swinton Lions.