Featherstone Rovers maintain unbeaten league start with thumping win over Bradford Bulls
Featherstone Rovers maintained their 100 per cent start to the Championship campaign and retained the Peter Fox Memorial Trophy with a thumping victory over Bradford Bulls on Sunday afternoon.
Both sides had come into the game on the back of seven-match winning streaks but Rovers delivered a dominant display to keep their hosts scoreless as they ran in eight tries to keep the pace with league leaders Toulouse Olympique.
Connor Jones opened the scoring as he took a pass from Gareth Gale to go over between the posts.
Craig Hall and Gale then crossed for a try each to extend the hosts’ advantage by eight points.
Two tries late in the first half put Featherstone in total control as Will Dagger dotted down on his second debut for the club with Hall’s successful conversion taking him to 400 career goals.
Thomas Minns added Rovers’ fifth try of the game two minutes later as he latched onto an inside ball from John Davies.
There was a lengthy stoppage in play early in the second half as Bradford’s Ebon Scurr was taken from the field on a stretcher.
The player was later given the all clear.
Tom Holmes scored the first points of the second half with 66 minutes on the clock as he dotted down for a try before Dean Parata and Callum Field both planted down over the whitewash in the final six minutes.
“I thought it was a fantastic performance from us. Our application and desire in that first 20 minutes set a really good platform for us,” said head coach James Webster.
“I am really happy for the boys in there.”
He continued: “We have worked hard on effort this year. Not so much the finer points of the game, we have just worked on effort.
“We have a pretty talented group of players and we only train a couple of times a week. We work mostly on effort and you can see that.
“Bradford threw plenty at us, physically, and through some structure.
“In the first 10 minutes of the second half we were camped on our try-line but we were able to weather that storm.”
Dagger, on a short-term loan from Hull KR, and Darcy Lussick, who has joined on loan from Salford Red Devils, both played their part in Rovers’ eighth-straight league victory.
The pair are due to return to their respective parent clubs after next week’s clash at Dewsbury Rams.
Webster added: “We will see what happens after next week because both of them are only here for one more game but we will see what happens.”