Bulldogs hit back to claim derby win

Robbie Ward
Robbie Ward
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Batley Bulldogs ran in five second half tries in the space of 17 minutes to clinch victory over old foes Dewsbury Rams.

It was the first time in four meetings this season that Batley had registered victory in the Heavy Woollen derby but it took until the final quarter for them to click into gear.

Gareth Moore

Gareth Moore

Robbie Ward gave Dewsbury a seventh minute lead when he forced his way over following Gareth Moore’s 40-20 kick.

Alex Brown then latched onto Josh Guzdek’s long pass to score in the right corner as Dewsbury led 8-0.

The Rams had further chances with Alex Brown dropping another pass with the line gaping.

Batley survived a spell down to 12 men after James Brown was sin-binned but they hit back just before half-time when Dane Manning crashed over at the side of the posts and Patch Walker converted.

Jason Crookes

Jason Crookes

Dewsbury extended their lead in the 48th minute when Dale Morton gathered the ball after Wayne Reittie spilled a high kick to crash over and Paul Sykes converted.

Former Ram Jason Crookes sparked Batley’s fightback as he crashed over wide on the left and Walker converted and just two minutes later James Brown made a superb break before feeding winger Reittie, who produced a brilliant jinking run to the line.

Walker’s conversion put Batley 18-14 ahead.

Manning drove the ball in and flipped a pass out for Dominic Brambani to score, Joel Farrell drove over the line for a try against his former club before Reittie crossed for his second and Walker landed three more goals.

Dewsbury had centre Macauley Hallett sent off for dissent before Moore was awarded a consolation penalty try when he was impeded having kicked ahead.

The win means Batley stay sixth in the table, while Neil Kelly’s Rams fall a place to ninth as Rochdale beat Lancashire rivals Swinton.

Batley Bulldogs: Reittie; Smeaton, Southernwood, Crookes, Ainscough; Walker, Brambani; Gledhill, Leak, Lillycrop, Manning, Farrell, Day. Subs: Rowe, Davey, Bretherton, J Brown.

Dewsbury Rams: Guzdek; Morton, Hallett, Squires, Alex Brown; Sykes, Moore; Sheriffe, Ward, Teanby, Spicer, Crowther, Aaron Brown. Subs: Speakman, Adamson, Walshaw, Everett.

Referee: Tom Crashley (RFL).

Attendance: 1,226

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