Double delight for Batley Boys after thrilling play-off success

Batley Boys completed the Yorkshire Men's League double with victory over Bentley.
Batley Boys completed the Yorkshire Men's League double with victory over Bentley.

Batley Boys capped a memorable season as they completed the Yorkshire Men’s League double with a thrilling 11-10 victory over Bentley in the play-off final at Featherstone’s LD Nutrition Stadium last Saturday.

The Boys went into the game as favourites having completed back-to-back Premier Division title wins.

The first 20 minutes was a tough battle with both sides scoring a try.

JJ Price stepped his way through the defence to collect Batley’s try, while there were strong displays up the slope by the Boys forwards, led by Gavin Davies, Rob Garforth, Josh O’Sullivan, Lewis Hardy and man-of-the-match Aaron James.

Bentley scored a second try as they edged back in front but Batley used the substitutes bench well to freshen things up, with Matt Sheridan, Ryan Crossley and Nath Willans all being rotated effectively.

Adam Bingham kicked a penalty goal seconds before half-time as Batley went into the break trailing by just four points.

Batley started the second half strongly and had a try disallowed for offside when Adam Bingham’s kick was collected by Luke Sheridan.

Josh Knowles went close moments later when he was held up before Bingham kicked to the corner but the ball was dropped by winger Josh Scruton.

Batley’s forwards helped them into another good field position with Davies, Sheridan, Brown and Aaron James making yards along with Damo Fletcher and Josh Whitehead, although they were forced into changes after injuries to JJ Price and Matt Sheridan.

The breakthrough came four minutes from full-time as Ryan Crossley dived over from acting half-back after O’Sullivan had driven them close but Bingham missed the conversion.

Batley collected the kick-off and made their way down the field but although Bingham was twice tackled attempting a drop goal, Scruton struck the ball sweetly between the posts to edge them in front two minutes from time.

Bentley tried to put pressure on Batley but the defence held out to seal victory and cap a wonderful season which also saw the Boys reach the Challenge Cup third round.