YORK City Knights and Bradford Bulls are the only realistic contenders for the Betfred League One title, and if the two sides serve up a similar contest to the reverse fixture, fans could be in for a thrilling afternoon.

The pair battled it out on the opening day of the league season in a seesaw encounter at Bootham Crescent. York edged 8-4 ahead early on before a converted Elliot Minchella try gave Bulls a two-point lead at the break.

Steve Crossley's try put John Kear's side eight points in front, before a storming comeback saw the hosts lead by one point with 11 minutes remaining.

Bulls regained the lead through a Joe Keyes penalty but a drop-goal brought York level at 20-20. The match was settled on the final hooter, with Keyes slotting home a controversial last-gasp penalty to win the game 22-20.

Both sides have only lost once since, Bulls at Workington and Knights at Whitehaven, with second-placed York currently holding an eight-point advantage over their nearest challengers Oldham Roughyeds.

Second-row Joe Batchelor is one of York's star players and he scored a fine brace of tries against Bulls in that reverse fixture. His talent has not gone unnoticed and he will join Super League leaders St Helens next season.

Connor Robinson showed nerves of steel in that tense encounter, scoring with every conversion attempt and slotting home two drop goals. He has kicked over 100 goals now this season and has won three man of the match awards.

Captain Tim Spears brings a wealth of experience to the York line-up, having played for and captained a strong Featherstone Rovers side, who topped the Championship on four consecutive occasions between 2010-2013.

The 33-year-old made less savoury headlines in Knights' clash with Keighley Cougars last month, after being sin-binned for his part in a 26-man mass brawl.

Off the pitch, York have taken the decision to make the highly-regarded James Ford their first ever full-time coach, and he has signed a deal with the club which runs until the end of the 2021 season.

The move provides the club with real off-field stability and although they laboured in last week's 22-20 success at London Skolars, York's results on the pitch suggest that Bulls will be in a titanic title fight tomorrow.

Meanwhile, York have bolstered their ranks ahead of the game after signing Leeds Rhinos pair Jack Ormondroyd and Josh Jordan-Roberts to bolster their ranks ahead of Sunday’s top-of-the-table clash at Bradford Bulls.

Ormondroyd, son of Bradford City legend Ian, has joined on loan for the rest of this season, while Jordan-Roberts has signed on a free transfer until the end of the 2019 campaign.

Both will now be among the Knights’ ranks at Odsal.

Prop-forward Ormondroyd is the son of former Bradford City footballer Ian and, as well as playing 14 times for Super League Rhinos, has enjoyed two loan spells with Featherstone Rovers, where he claimed five tries in 22 outings.

The 26-year-old, who is 6ft 5in and 16st 4lb, also had a spell with Thirlmere Roosters in Australia’s Group 6 Country Rugby League.

Jordan-Roberts, 19, is the son of former Hull FC player Rob Roberts.

He has played twice for Rhinos and, during loan spells, represented Bradford seven times and Hunslet on 12 occasions, where he also scored a try.

Born in Leeds, Jordan-Roberts is 6ft 1in and 15st 12lb.