Challenge Cup: Bradford Bulls 16-20 Halifax

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Challenge Cup: Halifax beat Bradford in quarter-final to set up Saints tie
Coral Challenge Cup quarter-final
Bradford Bulls (6) 16
Tries: Milnes, Webster, Wildie Goals: Lilley 2
Halifax (0) 20
Tries: Penalty, Grix, Woodburn-Hall Goals: Tyrer 3

Halifax became the first Championship side in 13 years to reach the semi-finals of the Challenge Cup with a hard-fought win over Bradford Bulls.

The Bulls, five-time winners of the competition, edged a scrappy first half with Rowan Milnes scoring the only try.

However, Milnes was carried off before the break with a broken left leg.

The lead then went back and forth, including an eight-point penalty try for Halifax, before James Woodburn-Hall crossed late on to put Fax through.

Halifax have been rewarded with a last-four tie at Super League leaders St Helens on 27 July at the University of Bolton Stadium.

It was an enthralling second half at Odsal as Steve Tyrer's penalty try and Scott Grix's touchdown, either side of Jake Webster's score, saw Halifax twice come from behind.

Matty Wildie pounced on a mistake by Kevin Larroyer to put Bradford 16-14 up, but Woodburn-Hall's superb individual try five minutes from time settled the encounter.

The injury to 19-year-old Milnes only deepened Bradford's woes and he is now expected to be out for around six weeks.

Hull KR were the last Championship club to make the last four in 2006 before suffering a 50-0 mauling by eventual winners St Helens.

Halifax, five times winners of the cup themselves, will be hopeful of avoiding a similar drubbing against a 2019 Saints side who are in excellent form.

Defeat for Bradford ends a season to remember in the cup including beating old foes Leeds Rhinos in the last round.

But it is Simon Grix's Halifax who are now just one more victory away - albeit an unlikely one - from reaching the showpiece at Wembley on 24 August for a 13th time.

Bradford coach John Kear told BBC Sport:

"It is a hard way to lose. It was a great contest and we gave it a great shot.

"It has been a good story for us but now it is back to the run-of-the-mill of the Championship.

"It came down to missed tackles but you have to credit Halifax as they came with a game-plan. We defended great but just got shaded on possession."

Halifax head coach Simon Grix told BBC Sport:

"It is unbelievable. The 80 minutes was up and down and all over the place but we showed some true character.

"Credit to the lads, they were brilliant today. We'll enjoy this but we have another big day to look forward to."

Bradford Bulls: Ryan, Grant, Webster, Oakes, Foggin-Johnston, Lilley, Milnes, Kirk, Wildie, Crossley, Minchella, Farrell, Hallas.

Interchanges: Peltier, Wood, Storton, Flanagan.

Halifax: Laulu-Togaga'e, Saltonstall, Tyrer, Butler, Sharp, Murrell, Grix, Kavanagh, Moore, Tangata, Cooper, Barber, Fairbank.

Interchanges: Woodburn-Hall, Larroyer, Fleming, Morris.

Referee: Scott Mikalauskas (RFL)

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