WEST Bowling have been urged to use their Challenge Cup run as a springboard to help them got off to a flier when their league season starts next month.

The Bradford amateur side gave semi-professional hosts Workington a real scare before the League One club prevailed 28-22 in the third round clash.

It was the second successive season that Bowling had reached that stage, having also been beaten by third-tier opposition in the form of Hunslet.

But while the Leeds side ran away with proceedings after a tight first half to triumph 56-10 12 months ago, Bowling showed much more resilience this time.

Wests coach Ryan Hunkin said: "We spoke straight away after the final whistle – we can’t just leave it there.

"We had a little bit of dip last year. Mentally and physically it took a bit out us when we played Hunslet. We want to really kick on this year.

"We'll have a break with no training tonight but will be back at it on Thursday with the focus on our league opener on March 7 against Wigan St Pat’s.

"Everyone in our league will be looking at us due to our performances in the Challenge Cup but we want to put a marker down for March 7."

Bowling trailed 24-4 at Workington before converted tries from Richard Lumb and Ollie Bartle put them right back in it. Even when a try by Russell Bolton looked to have eased the pressure on the hosts, a try by Dan Gregory, converted by Ben Heald, put Bowling within six points and still pressing before they ran out of time.

After the defeat to a strong Workington side, which included former NRL star Fuifui Moimoi, Hunkin said: "The lads played out of their skin. I think they deserved something more.

"I’m pretty sure Workington would probably agree with us. To get a standing ovation from their fans as we walked off the park was something special for us."

The Wests chief hailed his whole squad for their effort before singling out hooker Danny Halmshaw, who scored Bowling's first try.

"He was probably the best player on the park to be honest. He was different class," said Hunkin, who also praised the club's travelling fans for their vocal support.

"The back row of Jack Milburn and Richard Lumb went really well and the back three of Jack Atkinson, Ben Heald and Nick Fontaine really helped the forwards out in yardage carries."

Workington's coach Chris Thorman also weighed in with plaudits towards the promoted National Conference Division One side.

He said: “I have to give massive credit to West Bowling. They had to deal with a postponement last week and they had to travel up from Bradford.

“I thought they did their club really proud.”