BATLEY Bulldogs are hoping to use their home Challenge Cup fourth-round tie against the Giants as a springboard for their bid to stage a World Cup game at Mount Pleasant in 2013.
The cup tie on Sunday, May 8 looks certain to be all-ticket because of the demands of Huddersfield fans.
All Super League season-ticket holders are entitled to free admission to the Cup clash.
And with the Giants having 5,000 season-ticket holders it means they could virtually fill Mount Pleasant if they take up the free offer, while the Co-operative Championship side have also to cater for their own supporters.
The Bulldogs are in discussions with Kirklees Council to agree a capacity for the ground and it seems likely to be between 4,500 and 5,000. Certainly all Batley’s 1,500 seats will be taken up.
The free admission for the visitors means Batley will make little financially from the tie.
But they are hoping to prove to Rugby Football League officials they are capable of staging a big game and this will help in their bid for a World Cup fixture.
The game Batley officials have in mind is Ireland against Fiji, which should prove an attraction.
“The cup tie is likely to be all-ticket, we are looking forward to a big crowd and to have a good atmosphere,” said Batley chairman Kevin Nicholas, pictured left.
“When we played Catalans last year we had an attendance of more than 2,000 and the French side didn’t bring any support.
“The Giants will be far more of an attraction and it will be good for our players to experience that sort of atmosphere at our ground.
“We’re hoping to show we can stage a game with a decent crowd to help us to get involved in staging a World Cup match.
“We are getting together with Kirklees Leisure Services to put a bid together.
“We have a plan of action but we need to showcase ourselves against the Giants.
“For that game we are planning to stage pre-match and half-time entertainment and give the Challenge Cup a real carnival atmosphere.
“We want to make it a special occasion and if Huddersfield supporters respond in reasonable numbers and we can generate interest among local people, we should have no trouble in having a full house.”
If Batley do not succeed in staging a World Cup game, they will still offer Mount Pleasant as a training base.