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Opposition wising up to Keith Lulia’s game style for Bradford Bulls
Keith Lulia’s hand-offs have made him a firm favourite at Odsal this year – but the Bulls star reckons opposition teams are beginning to work him out.
The Cook Islands international showcased his undeniable class with an awesome hand-off and pass to send the returning Jason Crookes over the line in Friday’s win against Hull KR.
Although a laconic character off the pitch, Lulia takes no prisoners on it and often uses a strong hand to swat rival players aside, as evidenced again in the 32-26 victory.
Yet 25-year-old Lulia, a close-season signing from Newcastle Knights, admitted: “Most of the teams are starting to study it now and they know the hand-offs are coming.
“I’ve got to pick and choose when to use it but it’s the main part of my game.
“I got that pass away and Crookesy had a little bit of space to score that try and he made the most of it with a great finish.
“It’s good to have Crookesy back because we had a good connection at the start of the year. He talks well and we play well together.”
The return of Crookes after four months on the sidelines with a shoulder injury has given the Bulls another major boost as they bid to make the Super League play-offs.
Lulia said the win over Hull KR, which lifted the Bulls level on points with Craig Sandercock’s men, had further fuelled the belief that a top-eight finish is theirs for the taking.
“We’re now level on points with Hull KR and if we win one more game than them then we make the eight,” he said.
“If we get into the play-offs then we’ve got a chance of making the finals.
“It’s definitely a confidence boost for us. I think we’ll go to Huddersfield confident on Sunday after beating Hull KR last week.
“The boys are on a high, so let’s hope we go to Huddersfield and do the same to them that we did to Hull KR.”