Double victory as rugby star sets up crucial win before abandoning game to dash to pregnant wife's bedside

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A FORMER Batley rugby league player was forced to abandon a crucial game to rush to the side of his wife as she gave birth to their first child.

After helping helping teammate Theo Fages score a crucial 64th minute try over Wakefield on Friday night, Alex Walmsley, made a mad dash to reach his wife.

But as hard as he 'tried' Walmsley, who now plays for St Helen's, arrived too late, missing the birth of little bundle Atticus John.

He tweeted on Saturday: "Sorry I had to finish my shift a little early last night but I needed to miss the traffic. Welcome to the world Atticus John Walmsley."

Walmsley was told of his side's precious 18-16 victory by a jubilant coach Justin Holbrook.

"He's had a baby boy and she had it very quickly," Holbrook said after the game. "He's on his way now. I've just spoken to him. He's thrilled that we won and I'm thrilled for him."

The Dewsbury-born star played for Leeds' Met and Dewsbury Celtic before making his professional debut with Batley Bulldogs.