BULLS head coach John Kear was delighted with his side's valiant effort in their 17-14 defeat at Super League team Wakefield Trinity in the Coral Challenge Cup fifth round.

Bradford were the better side for most of the contest, going in front on a couple of occasions before Reece Lyne's late try proved to be the difference.

There was certain evidence that the Betfred Championship team can compete towards the top of the table this campaign.

The returning Kear, who spent five years at Wakefield from 2006-11, was pleased with the spirit his young side showed in not letting their top-flight opposition phase them.

He said: "When you sit in a press conference after you have played a Super League team and are disappointed to lose, it shows what the players are capable of. Proud as punch of what we have done tonight. We are made up of part-timers. We had a five-day turnaround (from the Sheffield Eagles match) and played like that. Over the moon with the performance but disappointed that we are not through to the next round.

"They need to gain some confidence from that. They have not been playing mugs, they have been playing a good rugby league team with some outstanding individuals. They have matched them and have not looked out of place so I am delighted."

David Foggin-Johnston was recalled to the side and looked good using his pace and power to hurt the Wakefield defence.

The winger almost crossed the whitewash when he sprinted 70 metres before being dragged down just short of the line.

However, Kear believes his side had better chances to consolidate their lead.

He said: "If it had been a championship game I think it would have been (a try for Foggin-Johnston) but Tom Johnston is not slow, he has caught a few pigeons in his time. You knew when they had Bill Tupou and Reece Lune coming back, he had to hit the full gas all the way but they just chased him down.

"I thought the two chances earlier in the game were the ones that could have brought it back but it is easy to say that in hindsight.

"I think when we got 14-7 we just needed another. We could have been 18 points up before Wakefield got on the scoreboard. We did not take our chances and that is how clinical you have to be at this level.

"There are a lot of young players who can gain confidence and belief from their effort out there today."

The veteran boss was particularly impressed with the performances of backs Jordan Lilley and Rowan Milnes.

The stand off and scrum half each scored a try and Milnes was perfect behind the boot, kicking all three attempts between the sticks.

Kear added: "They are good players. Jordan is at our club for the rest of this year and the next one, we have just secured him. Rowan is a Hull KR player that we have got on a season loan, they have got a good player, he is going to go there and become a super league player there is no doubt in my mind.

"They need to produce those standards in the nitty gritty Championship and if they do that we can have a good season this year."

The Bradford boss summarised before chuckling at the suggestion that old mate and Wakefield head coach Chris Chester would buy him a beer.

He said: "I was pleased with the whole 80 minutes. I thought we started really well, it was a consistently good performance against a very good team.

"He should do (get me a beer), shouldn’t he, they’re in the next round."