Bulldogs impress to defeat Raiders

Dane Manning was among Batley's try scoroer in their win over Barrow.
Dane Manning was among Batley's try scoroer in their win over Barrow.

Batley Bulldogs recovered from a slow start to run in 32 unanswered points as they overcame Barrow Raiders in their first Betfred Championship home game of the season.

It is 17 years since Barrow last won at Batley but the Raiders threatened to end that baron run when they raced into a 12-0 lead in the opening 12 minutes.

Once Batley clicked into gear, they produced some excellent rugby and turned the game round to lead 16-12 at half-time having played up the Mount Pleasant slope.

Batley added a further four unanswered tries after the break to register a comfortable 32-12 victory.

Batley began slowly and Barrow took full advantage as Alex Susino broke through a tackle and charged down the slope before sending supporting full-back Ryan Fieldhouse storming to the line for the opening try, which Jamie Dallimore converted.

Batley then knocked on deep in their own half and having driven play close to the line, Barrow moved play inside and Susino forced his way over to plant the ball between the posts and Dallimore added the simple goal.

Batley fought back immediately as they forced Barrow to drop out from the kick off. Play was moved left and Brad Day met a pass at pace to storm through and he crashed over Fieldhouse to score, with Patch Walker converting.

Susino almost grabbed a second try but lost the ball in the act of scoring before Batley surged back up the slope to draw level.

Michael Ward made a terrific break immediately after coming off the bench to set up the attack and Dane Manning gathered an offload to crash over at the side of the posts, with Walker converting.

Batley grabbed a third try in the 36th minute as impressive half-back Dominic Brambani produced a lovely weighted kick to the right and winger Wayne Reittie outjumped a defender to collect the ball and dive over in the corner as the Bulldogs led 16-12 at half-time.

Batley dominated the early staged of the second half to add a further three tries and wrap up the win.

Day collected a pass as Batley moved quickly left and he cut inside and stormed through the defence to score between the posts and Walker added his third goal.

A terrific break by Reittie set up another Bulldogs attack before James Brown drove the ball in and offloaded to send full-back Dave Scott through a huge gap and over for the try, with Walker converting.

Batley twice forced Barrow to drop out during their dominant second half performance and another lovely sweeping passing move left was ended when Scott dived in at the corner.

With the victory wrapped up, the final quarter became a little scrappy with a series of penalties halting the tempo of the match.

Batley’s Joe Chandler and Barrow hooker Dean Parata were sin-binned in the final minute for a skirmish on the far touchline but overall it was a satisfying performance by the Bulldogs as they look to make Mount Pleasant a fortress in 2018.

Batley Bulldogs: Scott; Reittie, Cowling, Crookes, Ainscough; Walker, Brambani; Gledhill, Leak, Rowe, Manning, Day, Holland. Subs: Hemingway, Chandler, Ward, Brown.

Barrow Raiders: Fieldhouse; Toal, Stack, Hulme, Carter; Dallimore, Ashall; Duffy, Parata, Susino, Morrow, Crellin, Aspinwall. Subs: Mossop, Bullock, Walker, Riley.

Referee: Greg Dolan.

Attendance: 657.