Bradford Bulls 10-26 Toulouse Olympique
Bradford Bulls have been relegated to League 1 after losing 26-10 against Toulouse Olympique at the Provident Stadium this afternoon. The Bulls, who started the season on minus 12 points, struggled on the field from the beginning and never found their feet.
Rhys Curran opened the scoring for Olympique after three minutes, with Mark Kheirallah converting for the French club. Gavin Marguerite’s converted try doubled the visitors’ advantage before Bradford got on the board themselves, through winger Iliess Macani. Curran and Ross Peltier exchanged tries in the latter stages of the first period, which ended with Toulouse 18-10 up.
Just eight points were scored in the second half thanks to unconverted tries from Marguerite and Tony Maurel. A sad day for the Bulls and their fans.
Batley Bulldogs 62-10 Swinton Lions
Batley Bulldogs hammered Swinton Lions at the Fox’s Biscuits Stadium as Matt Diskin’s men got their Championship Shield campaign off to a superb start. The first try of the contest went the way of Swinton and their winger Shaun Robinson but the Bulldogs soon replied. Alex Bretherton and Wayne Reittie both crossed to put the hosts in front before they were pegged back by Ben Austin. Chris Hankinson converted for 10-10. Shaun Ainscough and Sam Smeaton added a try apiece for Batley, who went into the break 18-10 to the good.
Whatever Diskin said at half-time worked wonders as the Bulldogs put 44 points on the Lions without reply. James Davey, Dave Scott, Bretherton and Reittie all completed their braces while James Brown – who was sin-binned during the second period – and Joel Farrell also touched down for the West Yorkshire club. Swinton’s Josh Barlow also found himself in the sin-bin, with the forward shown a yellow card for dissent. A good day at the office for Batley.
Dewsbury Rams 56-8 Rochdale Hornets
Dewsbury Rams are sailing to safety under Neil Kelly, their latest victory a 56-8 hammering of Rochdale Hornets at the Tetley’s Stadium. The win puts them three points clear of the Hornets and in the last Championship Shield playoff position. The Rams were 28-4 up at half-time thanks to braces from James Glover and Gareth Potts as well as tries courtesy of Macauley Hallett and Sam Day. Jono Smith bagged Rochdale’s only four-pointer of the first period.
Potts scored his third and fourth tries of the contest after the restart while Josh Guzdek also got in on the action by crossing the whitewash. Day scored his second try of the contest before Glover completed his hat-trick in the final minutes of the tie. Chris Riley had scored Rochdale’s second, and final, score of the afternoon just past the hour mark.
Sheffield Eagles 56-16 Oldham
Sheffield Eagles got back to winning ways in emphatic fashion, beating Oldham 56-16 at the Beaumont Legal Stadium. Sheffield raced into a 22-0 lead thanks to tries from Paddy Flynn, Sam Scott, Elliot Minchella and Matty Fozard but Oldham finished the half on the front foot. Matt Wilkinson and Dave Hewitt both crossed in quick succession to cut the deficit to just ten points heading into the break.
However, a rollicking at half-time from coach Mark Aston seemed to do the Eagles a lot of good as they scored 28 points without reply to seal the win. Owens, Flynn and Fozard all completed their braces while Minchella went one better by scoring a hat-trick. Scott Wheeldon also got on the scoresheet for the South Yorkshire club, who are in third place in the Championship Shield. Kenny Hughes sniped a consolation try out of dummy-half for the Roughyeds, on a disappointing afternoon for Scott Naylor’s men.