BATLEY BULLDOGS’ 42-24 defeat at Leigh Centurions in the First Utility Qualifiers was an “opportunity missed”, according to coach John Kear.
A week after playing in front of a 15,000 crowd at Leeds, more than 10,000 saw Bulldogs outscored seven tries to four.
Leigh offered free admission to celebrate promotion to Super League and Kear felt Batley should have spoiled their party. He said: “I think if we had been as focused and intense and physical as we were against Leeds we would have had a great opportunity to come away with the points.
“We made far too many errors and gave far too many penalties away. They ran harder than us and hit harder than us.”
Bulldogs will complete their season – and Kear’s time in charge – on Sunday at home to relegation-threatened Super League side Salford Red Devils.
Salford lost to Batley’s Kingstone Press Championship rivals London Broncos last weekend and are on course for a meeting with either Hull KR or Huddersfield Giants in the million pound match.
But Salford will be relegated if they lose to Batley and London beat Featherstone and Kear said: “They will be desperate and we have got to attempt to match that desperation.”
Batley came through the game at Leigh with no new injuries.