Duo could return for crucial Haven clash

Cain Southernwood is set to miss Sunday's game against Whitehaven having suffered suspected ligament damage.
Cain Southernwood is set to miss Sunday's game against Whitehaven having suffered suspected ligament damage.

Batley Bulldogs could welcome back full-back James Craven and scrum-half Scott Leatherbarrow for Sunday’s clash against Whitehaven.

Craven sustained a serious knee injury in the home defeat to Halifax on March 1, while Leatherbarrow broke an arm against Sheffield the week after.

Both have resumed full training and could be selected for Sunday’s crucial home game.

However, Cain Southernwood is the latest Batley half-back to sustain an injury after he was helped from the field during last week’s defeat at leaders Leigh Centurions.

It was initially feared Southernwood had sustained a broken leg but x-rays have revealed that is not the case and Batley are awaiting further tests to see the extent of the injury.

Batley signed Southernwood from Whitehaven during the close season but the goalkicking stand-off is set to miss the crunch clash against his former club.

Batley are on a three-match losing run in the Kingstone Press Championship, which has seen them slip to ninth place, two points above Whitehaven.

The Bulldogs are entering a crucial period which sees them travel to another side below them in the table, Workington Town, on May 10.

The return of Craven and Leatherbarrow would provide a timely boost to John Kear’s side as they seek to turn round their fortunes and climb the table against a Whitehaven side who have lost all five matches away from home this season.

Haven were beaten 26-18 at Hunslet a fortnight ago and lost 36-12 at home to Featherstone Rovers last Sunday.

Following the trip to Workington next week, Batley take on Widnes Vikings in the Challenge Cup before the Summer Bash showdown with Dewsbury Rams on May 24.