Kear ‘pig sick’ by manor of Bulldogs loss

Bulldogs coach John Kear.
Bulldogs coach John Kear.

Batley Bulldogs coach John Kear was left angered at the crucial decision which cost his side chance of victory away to Bradford Bulls last Sunday.

Speaking in the after match press conference at Odsal, a furious Kear fell short of criticising referee Joe Cobb personally but was adamant he got the crucial decision wrong when Dominic Brambani appeared to ground the ball before it came loose and Bradford pounced to score.

Kear said: “Brambani grounded the ball and that is the top and bottom of it.

“I’m absolutely adamant that he grounded the ball and if there had been a video referee here it would have been a goal-line drop-out.

“I’m absolutely spewing and pig sick because that was the turning point in the game.

“We are big enough to handle this but we just want a performance where the game is refereed and not the expected outcome.”

Batley have now pushed the full-time big spending Bulls all the way over home and away Championship fixtures, with just a single point separating the sides after 160 pulsating minutes.

Kear was proud of his side’s efforts at Odsal, adding: “I thought our two tries in the first half, in dry conditions, were very good pieces of rugby league and the half-time scoreline reflected our performance.

“I thought it was a really competitive game but the rain spoilt it.

“When the rain came into it, Bradford looked after the ball better than us and built field position.”

Bulls coach Rohan Smith sympathised with Batley following the key decision which played a major part in his side’s 17-16 win which saw them move above Batley into third spot.

Smith said: “In those situations, I look for the reaction of the defending team but it was an extremely tough call.”

Batley have slipped out of the top four but just two points separate the third placed Bulls from Featherstone Rovers in sixth.

Those four sides appear set to battle it out for the two remaining places in the Middle Eights stage of the competition, with Leigh Centurions and London Broncos out in front in the top two spots.