Ashall: Fax want to bounce back from ‘loss’

Craig Ashall
Craig Ashall

Halifax hooker Craig Ashall has admitted last Thursday’s 18-18 Championship stalemate at Batley “felt like a loss”.

Fax remain unbeaten ahead of Sunday’s clash with Swinton at the Shay (3.0) after taking two points from the second-versus-third encounter.

But after the visitors saw an 18-8 lead eroded in the last eight minutes - Tom Hemingway’s last-play conversion salvaging the draw for John Kear’s side - Ashall’s verdict reflected the feeling in a sombre away dressing room.

“It felt like a loss more than anything else,” said Ashall.

“When you’re 10 points up with 72 minutes on the clock, you expect to win and we were cruising at 18-10.

“Errors happen in games, but we should have defended them better than we did.

“We gifted Batley those opportunities to get back into the game.

“As a game, it was a great advert for the Championship, fantastic.

“But we came away pretty gutted.”

Ashall and his younger brother Karl - who was 18th man at Mount Pleasant after boss Karl Harrison recalled forward Sam Barlow - will both have a little extra motivation this weekend against their former club.

Craig spent three years with the Lions before arriving at Fax via Rochdale, while Karl played for the club in the Championship last season.

“It’ll be interesting,” said Craig, although he acknowledged the influx of Warrington players has left a question mark over a fixture previousing considered a near-certain home win.

“On paper it’s a win,” he said.

“But with Warrington’s influence on their team we will just play what’s in front of us on Sunday.”