Batley Bulldogs: Super League opposition is a Challenge Cup ‘carrot’ for Kear

John Kear.
John Kear.
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challenge cup king John Kear wants another crack at Super League opposition, but has warned his Batley Bulldogs players they face a tough task reaching the sixth round.

Bulldogs, of the Kingstone Press Championship, have home advantage against League One side Swinton Lions tomorrow (3pm) and Kear hopes victory will lead to another tie against one of the sport’s big guns.

Batley have faced Huddersfield Giants and Castleford Tigers at Mount Pleasant in the past two years and Kear, who previously coached both Sheffield Eagles and Hull to Cup final glory, said: “We’ve taken big, full-time Super League clubs to the wire. It is a big driving force for us as a performance group to go as far as we can in the competition. It is a big goal of the club as well, to secure a big pay-day, but that can only be achieved should we be successful this weekend.”

Swinton were thumped 50-12 at Barrow Raiders last week, but Kear is not reading anything into that.

“That was their first defeat of the year and it was their third game in eight days,” he said.

“They have reached the final of the iPro Sport Cup and they drew with North Wales Crusaders, who came to our ground in pre-season and put us to the sword.

“They are a good team, with good personnel.

“They have got vast Championship experience and some Super League experience, so if we under-estimate them it will be at our peril.”