Bulldogs grind out away win at Hunslet

Wayne Reittie's last minute try secured an impressive away win for Batley.
Wayne Reittie's last minute try secured an impressive away win for Batley.

Batley Bulldogs scored 18 unanswered second half points to register a 26-14 victory away to Hunslet Hawks and collect a second successive win in the Kingstone Press Championship.

Batley trailed 14-8 at the break having played against a fierce wind before dominating the second period.

The opening stages were scrappy as both teams took time to adjust to the conditions and it took 16 minutes for the first real chance of note when Cain Southernwood chipped over and regathered his own kick only to be hauled down.

Batley opened the scoring from their next attack when full-back raced through a gap to score wide on the left, with Scott Leatherbarrow’s conversion attempt drifting wide.

Hunslet responded immediately as Andy Kain’s neat kick through was pounced on by Jimmy Watson and Simon Brown converted to edge the Hawks ahead.

Former Batley forward Brad Brennan made a big impact coming off the bench and he grabbed the second Hawks try when he carried three defenders over the try line to score between the posts and give Brown a simple conversion.

Batley hit back when Cain Southernwood kicked left and centre Shaun Squires leapt to gather and score his fifth try in two games.

Hunslet ventures back upfield and Brown’s 40th minute penalty sent the Hawks into half-time with a 14-8 lead.

Batley took advantage of the elements after the break and drew level just two minutes after the re-start.

The Bulldogs were awarded a first penalty of the match, which took them close, and Anthony Nicholson’s turn of pace from acting half-back saw him race between the posts, with Leatherbarrow landing his first goal.

Batley took a 58th minute lead when Leatherbarrow’s kick right was superbly gathered by Shaun Ainscough to dive over in the corner and Leatherbarrow landed a superb touchline goal.

Leatherbarrow was also on target with a penalty soon after to stretch his side’s lead to eight points.

Batley’s defence was superb after the break to keep Hunslet at bay and the Bulldogs sealed victory in the final minute when Squires drove towards the line, stood up in a tackle and offloaded to give Wayne Reittie a try out wide.

Hunslet Hawks: Watson; Barnett, Briscoe, Maun, Finigan; Kain, Brown; Houston, Lee, Haley, Lyons, Casey, Mackay. Subs: Flanagan, Broughton, Brennan, Mulhern.

Batley Bulldogs: Craven; Reittie, Ainscough, Squires, Campbell; Southernwood, Leatherbarrow; Rowe, Blake, Lillycrop, Bretherton, Scott, Chandler. Subs: Nicholson, Gledhill, Brown, Mitchell.

Referee: Tom Crashley.

Attendance: 901.