Reaching play-offs would be one of my career highlights, says Bradford Bulls skipper Diskin (From Bradford Telegraph and Argus)
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Reaching play-offs would be one of my career highlights, says Bradford Bulls skipper Matt Diskin
Matt Diskin has four Super League titles on his curriculum vitae and is one of the most respected players in Super League.
In 2004 he helped Leeds to their first championship in 32 years and went on to taste Grand Final glory again in 2007, 2008 and 2009.
The Bulls hooker and joint-captain, 30, is now on the brink of helping Mick Potter’s team to an achievement arguably every bit as significant.
“Reaching the play-offs would rank very highly in my career,” said Diskin ahead of tonight’s crunch home clash with Hull FC.
“It’s hard to measure when you compare with silverware but the accomplishment is up there.
“We’ve had six points taken off us and all the off-field stuff and baggage we’ve had to deal with – all the adversity we’ve had thrown at us – we’ve taken in our stride.
“To have it still in our hands is a fantastic achievement, so yes, to make the play-offs would rank up there.”
Mick Potter and his players know that victory against Hull and Catalan Dragons would secure a first appearance in the play-off since 2008.
That feat would be in the bag now had the club not been docked six points for entering administration.
The Bulls have won six of their last eight Super League outings and victory this evening would seal a sixth straight home win.
Yet Diskin underlined the improvement in standards at Odsal this season when he admitted: “We’re getting a bit of momentum and yet bizarrely we’re still not happy with the way we’ve played.
“It’s sometimes hard to be too critical and too harsh when you look at some of the baggage we’ve been carrying with some of the off-field stuff.
“But how the players and coaching staff have handled it has been fantastic really.
“It would’ve been so easy and excusable for us to go the other way and concede defeat but there’s some character in the squad and we’re still fighting hard to achieve our goals.
“At the start of the year our goal was getting to the play-offs and through the adversity the club and players have had, to still be in contention is testament to the character that’s in the squad.”
Diskin will harbour no bitterness should the Bulls fall short in their bid to make the play-offs but tonight’s game will be the last at Odsal this year.
He added: “We want to make sure we finish on a high.
“The support from the fans with the pledge and through to now has been extremely humbling.
“Throughout my career I’ve not experienced anything like the support, camaraderie and interaction that I’ve had with the fans over the last three months.
“To have people ringing up and donating pocket money and wages is massively humbling. It shows how much this club means to the community.”