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Bulldogs targeting sixth straight win

Promising young centre Sam Wood will spend the 2019 season on loan at Batley after the club agreed a deal with Huddersfield Giants.
Promising young centre Sam Wood will spend the 2019 season on loan at Batley after the club agreed a deal with Huddersfield Giants.

Batley Bulldogs will aim to bring the curtain down on an impressive Betfred Championship Shield campaign with a sixth straight win when troubled Swinton Lions visit Fox’s Biscuits Stadium.

Since losing their opening Shield fixture at Featherstone Rovers, Batley have won five games on the bounce, culminating in last week’s terrific 30-16 victory over Leigh Centurions.

With a number of new signings already in place and others agreeing new deals to remain at the Bulldogs there appears to be exciting times ahead for Batley supporters.

The Bulldogs have continued to build for next season with the signing of two players from Super League clubs.

Promising 21-year-old centre Sam Wood will join Batley on a season long loan from Huddersfield Giants, with second row man Jack Downs making the move from Hull FC.

Wood is a graduate of the Giants Academy Scholarship programme and has made a number of Super League appearances this season.

He also scored six tries in nine first team appearances in 2017.

Downs made his Hull FC debut away to St Helens in 2015 and has featured for the first team seven times this season.

With Toby Everett joining from Dewsbury and Illies Macani making the switch from Sheffield Eagles, Batley are already laying down a strong marker for next season but will look to end the 2018 campaign on a high.

French half-back Louis Jouffret has also agreed a permanent deal with Batley for next season and he produced a man-of-the-match display at Leigh, capped my a memorable individual try.

Swinton arrive at Mount Pleasant in deep trouble, joint bottom of the table with Rochdale Hornets, who visit Sheffield in their final game.

Patch Walker remains just 12 points short of reaching the 500 landmark in Batley colours. He has 229 goals, two drop goals and seven tries in 73 games for the Bulldogs since 2016.

Dominic Brambani is set to play the 350th game of his career if he features against Swinton.

Brambani has played 85 games for Batley since 2016, and was previously with Sheffield (176 games, 2007-2008 & 2012-2015), Dewsbury (52 games, 2010-2011), Halifax (21 games, 2006), Featherstone (seven games, 2005) and Castleford (eight games, 2004-2005).

Following Sunday’s game, fans are invited to stay behind where entertainment will be provided outside the Bulldog bar, where the player of the year awards will also take place.