Evans expects tough time against Batley

RUGBY LEAGUE: Coach Danny Evans insists his Featherstone Rovers side will not take Batley Bulldogs lightly in tomorrow’s Kingstone Press Championship qualifying semi-final.

The winners will face Sheffield Eagles in the Grand Final at Leigh Sports Village in eight days.

Rovers – who are bidding for a fourth successive appearance in the title decider – finished the regular season as league leaders, four places and 13 points clear of Batley. But Evans knows Bulldogs have nothing to lose and he said past experience suggests Rovers are in for a tough afternoon.

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“Every time we’ve played them it has been a close game, whether it has been at their place or ours,” cautioned Evans.

“We are expecting a really tight game. Both teams have come into a bit of form towards the end of the season and we are looking forward to a really good encounter.”

Bulldogs have exceeded expectations by getting to within 80 minutes of the championship match.

“It’s little old Batley, under-resourced but punching above their weight,” said Bulldogs coach John Kear. “Credit to them for getting this far, but we feel as if we haven’t finished yet.”