NEW Bulls coach John Kear was pleased as punch after witnessing his team defeat Halifax 22-6 in yesterday’s opening pre-season friendly at Odsal.

“We have only had four field sessions but people played with commitment and understanding of each other and there were some good individual performances,” said Kear.

While admitting that he kept the game-plan simple due to the lack of preparation time, Kear highlighted the players’ ability to keep to a defensive strategy and to make themselves difficult to score against.

“The attitude and commitment to each other was marvellous but it wasn’t the prettiest game,” he said.

The experienced former Sheffield and Hull coach singled out three players for praise and explained: “Brandon Pickersgill was outstanding at full back and was faultless under the high ball.

“Elliot Minchella showed great composure and Steve Crossley was my other to make our top three.

“But all of the players have earned their Christmas turkey.”

The Bulls’ next pre-season friendly is at home to Sheffield Eagles on Sunday, January 14 (3pm) and the only injury worry is forward Ross Peltier, who limped off late in the second half.

Kear said: “Ross has a tear that will need treatment between Christmas and the New Year.

“We also have two or three players with knocks but we have pretty much come through unscathed.”