Depleted Rovers pipped at Batley in Super 8s Qualifiers

Luke Briscoe scored Featherstone's first try in Sunday's game at Batley. Picture: Bob Nunn.
Luke Briscoe scored Featherstone's first try in Sunday's game at Batley. Picture: Bob Nunn.

Featherstone Rovers slipped to a fourth successive defeat in the Super 8s Qualifiers when they were pipped 11-10 at Batley Bulldogs on Sunday.

The Bulldogs, who finished one place above Rovers in the Championship, snatched their first victory in the Qualifiers by recovering from 10-5 down to avenge a 34-6 home league defeat against Featherstone in July.

Winger Wayne Reittie’s second try 11 minutes from time earned the Bulldogs a win that could be worth an extra £50,000 to them in prize money.

It was tough on depleted Featherstone who battled excellently.

Rovers were without injured Kyle Briggs, Michael Channning, Andy Bostock and Jamie Cording and suspended John Davies.

Goalkicking winger Jamie Foster was recalled after missing the last six matches.

Playing up the slope in the first-half, Batley took a 14th minute lead when Reittie scored an unconverted try from Shaun Squires’s kick.

Featherstone levelled five minutes later when on-loan Leeds Rhinos winger Luke Briscoe capitalised on Danny Craven’s kick to touch down.

Rovers snatched the lead two minutes before the break when James Duckworth went over after the visitors were awarded four successive penalties. Foster was off target with his second conversion.

As the half-time hooter sounded, Batley’s Dominic Brambani kicked a drop to cut Featherstone’s lead to 8-5.

Foster kicked a 52nd minute penalty goal to edge Rovers five points ahead.

Batley’s Patch Walker replied with a penalty five minutes later to narrow the gap to 10-7.

They struck a decisive blow 11 minutes from time when Brambani’s 40-20 led to a spell of pressure that culiminated in Reittie grabbing his second touchdown from ex-Featherstone player Sam Smeaton’s clever pass.

Batley Bulldogs: Scott; Reittie, Squires, Ulugia, A Brown; Walker, Brambani; Hirst, Leak, Rowe, Day, Bretherton, Gledhill. Subs: Smeaton, Lillycrop, Blake, J Brown.

Featherstone Rovers: Hardman; Duckworth, Briscoe, Taulapapa, Foster; Craven, Thackeray; Griffin, Ellis, Baldwinson, Walters, Spears, Ormondroyd. Subs: Day, Tagg, Cooper, Snitch.

Referee: Joe Cobb.

Attendance: 1,131.