JOHN Kear was delighted with how the Bulls bounced back from their opening-day shocker to claim a thrilling first Championship win of the season over Halifax.

Jordan Lilley’s late drop-goal earned them a 27-26 victory at the Tetley’s Stadium – having trailed by 14 points in the first half.

It was just the response that Kear had wanted after blasting his team’s performance when they were hammered by Sheffield a fortnight ago.

“I thought they were magnificent,” said Kear.

“We’ve asked a lot of questions about the character and the togetherness and there’s no doubt they answered those questions.

“I sensed we were a bit fragile confidence-wise going into the game and it would have been easy to fold going 14-0 down with such a heavy penalty count against us.

“But they didn’t – they showed that they cared for each other and for the club.

“It was a great response to a lot of adversity.”

The Bulls scored 24 unanswered points to lead by 10 – only for Halifax to score two more tries to edge back in front. But Lilley, on his return from suspension, clinched the win five minutes from time.

Kear added: “My only worry was if we’d hit a wall because we’d had so much work to do.

“I was pretty pleased after 20 minutes with an 8-1 penalty count just to be two tries down.

“I was worried whether that would take too much out of us in the long run but fortunately it didn’t.

“We’ve shown that composure, belief and the effort that I questioned last time to bring home the bacon. I’m really pleased for the guys in that changing room.

“We got what we deserved today against a very good Halifax team.

“The last two weeks were well used, now we can start on the week-to-week grind of the league campaign.

“We’ve mentioned the man in the mirror a lot. Well, they can get up tomorrow morning, have a shave, look at that man in the mirror and feel pretty pleased with what they are seeing.”