Francis Cummins hailed yesterday’s 34-28 success over Warrington as the Bulls’ most important win of the season as they climbed off the foot of the Super League table.
The Bulls were already decimated by injuries before Luke George was ruled out prior to kick-off with a rib cartilage problem and Brett Kearney then departed after 25 minutes with a suspected broken thumb.
Yet they showed remarkable spirit to beat Warrington for the first time since 2009.
Head coach Cummins, whose side moved onto zero points and above London Broncos on points difference, said: “It was a massive win and the most satisfying of the year, no doubt, against a great team in Warrington.
“We’ve been trying to get to zero points since the third week of the season, so it’s great to finally do that.
“We only had one prop by Thursday morning and we knew it was going to be a tough old day. But then we signed Antonio Kaufusi, who I thought was great, plus the young lads, Sam Bates and Alex Mellor, were also outstanding for us off the bench.
“The lads have all done a massive shift today; they have done me, the owner and the fans proud.
“It’s amazing what you can do when everyone is working together. If we can keep this character, and a little more game-management as well as getting a few players back from injury, then we’re going to put a few teams under a lot of pressure.
“It wasn’t pretty at times but we got the win and that’s all that matters.”
Cummins said that Jamal Fakir will be out for several weeks after undergoing surgery on a badly broken finger but Manase Manuokafoa is expected to be back for Sunday’s home game with St Helens after a hamstring injury.
Kaufusi looks set to play a pivotal role in the next month and said: “I’m delighted with my debut. Saturday morning was my first run with the boys and it was great to get off to a good start.
"I need to play footie and I’ve got this opportunity but I don’t have a point to prove to anybody. For me it’s just about playing my role within the team and I’ve done that today.”
The Bulls remain six points behind Wakefield after the Wildcats won 23-16 at Hull FC yesterday, while their points appeal is expected to be heard next week before the Magic Weekend.
Warrington coach Tony Smith admitted Bradford wanted the victory more than his team and said: “They are playing with a lot of spirit. Franny is a talented young coach and what he is getting out of his players is enormous.
“I felt for him last week when the club issued that statement that challenged his players’ commitment – I thought that was outrageous.
“Franny has done a remarkable job here for the last couple of years and it might need to be some of the other things that go on here that should be looked at rather than Franny’s capabilities.”
Meanwhile, Cummins said he was hopeful of adding to his squad early this week and possibly even tomorrow.