JOHN Kear cannot wait for the Bulls to stand toe-to-toe with the Championship’s big hitters.

The fixtures for 2019 are due out within the next fortnight as the Odsal head coach counts down to leading his side back into the second tier.

With several survivors in the current squad from the team relegated two seasons ago, Kear feels there may also be a few individual scores to settle.

The Bulls went down after being slapped with a 12-point deduction for going into administration.

It was a sore point for the side at the time and those who still remain at the club will be aiming to do it justice when they get another crack at the Championship.

Kear said: “They were playing with one hand tied behind their backs through no fault of their own.

“That’s taken away now. We’re on a level playing field and can test ourselves against the others within that league.

“I’m pretty certain we’ll have a positive outcome in the fullness of the season.

“I’m just looking forward to it because we won’t be expected to whack everybody all the time.

“People will be a bit more forgiving when scorelines are close. I’m looking forward to it immensely.”

The Bulls broke the 50-point barrier in half of their 26 League One fixtures last season – and racked up 228 in their two meetings with the hapless West Wales Raiders.

Kear believes the step-up in class next year will show fans how good some of his players can be.

“They’ll appreciate the quality these young men will bring to the field and how much they have improved,” he added.

“A lot of the lads who were in the team that was relegated through no fault of theirs will be in the team as well to see where we can end up next year.

“That’s what makes it so exciting. We are measuring our recruitment but most of all, we’re measuring our self-improvement.”