The scorching heat of Toulouse proved too much for the Bradford Bulls as their unbeaten run came to an end in a resounding defeat against the French side. Toulouse emerged as dominant victors, securing a commanding 52-14 victory over their visitors.
The home team wasted no time asserting their authority as Benjamin Laguerre crossed the try line early on, capitalizing on a well-executed powerplay move. Despite the Bulls’ valiant efforts to claw their way back into the game, Toulouse extended their advantage at the end of the first quarter.
Josh Ralph, the influential Australian player, showcased his skill by manoeuvring past the Bradford defence to score his first try of the afternoon. Unfortunately for the Bulls, they faced an additional setback when Jordan Baldwinson had to leave the field due to injury, leaving them with one less interchange option.
Adding to the visitors’ misfortune, Appo was also forced off the pitch due to injury. The situation deteriorated further when Guy Armitage crashed over the try line, compounding the Bulls’ woes.
However, just before halftime, the Bulls managed to get on the scoreboard. An error from Toulouse provided an opportunity, and quick hands allowed Ben Blackmore to score a try, offering a glimmer of hope for the visiting team.
Toulouse resumed the second half in a similar fashion to their strong start, with Armitage securing his second try of the game. Bradford, determined to mount a comeback, found solace in Lee Gaskell, who marked his return to the club in style. Gaskell combined effectively with center Joe Arundel, latching onto Arundel’s well-placed kick to reduce the arrears.
Ralph continued to shine, bagging his second try of the match. Toulouse further extended their lead when they capitalized on a breakdown in a Bradford attack, breaking away to score another try.
To compound the Bulls’ misery, Brad England was sent off, reducing them to 12 men on the field. The French side wasted no time taking advantage of the numerical superiority, scoring back-to-back tries.
There was a momentary respite for Bradford when Kieran Gill touched down to celebrate his new contract with a try. However, Toulouse had the final say as Laguerre crossed the try line on the hooter, securing a fourth consecutive victory for the French team.
The defeat in Toulouse serves as a reminder that the Bulls’ unbeaten streak has come to an end. It is now up to the team to regroup, analyze their performance, and bounce back stronger in their upcoming fixtures.