JAMES FORD was keen to take the positives away from the performance of his York City Knights side whose pre-season campaign ended in a 6-4 defeat at Bradford Bulls.

The match finished seven minutes early due to lighting issues at the ground.

That shortly followed the sending off of Connor Robinson and the sin binning of Ben Johnston after their part in a brawl, with the former now potentially missing the Betfred Championship season opener at Toulouse on Saturday.

York had been on top in the contest prior to that point, having peppered the Bradford tryline with waves of attacks, only scoring once through Elliot Wallis.

And head coach Ford felt, finishing aside, that his side showed plenty of good signs.

“It was always going to be a tough game,” reflected Ford. “It’s a very narrow field and it was wet. And, Bradford are a good side.

“But I saw lots of positives, I thought our contact was good and I thought that we limited Bradford’s yardage pretty effectively.

“Our shape was good. And even though it finished with one try apiece, we created far more opportunities than them.

“Jubby’s been held up over the line, Marshy lost the ball over the line, Scotty was held up over the line, Sharpy’s not quite grounded the ball in the corner.

“I think that we’ve played pretty well, apart from scoring and playing the ball properly, which are two details that are obviously really important.

“I thought that in good ball we were much more cohesive than we have been.

“We’ve created seven or eight chances. The two things that we weren’t good at today were playing the ball properly and putting the ball down over the line.

“I would be worried had we not created opportunities. The trick to keep working on our skills and building combinations to make sure that we score more of them.

“On another day, we could have easily posted 30 points with the amount of chances that we created in that second half.”

Robinson’s sending off means York may be without their talismanic half-back for the trip to Toulouse.

“I’ve just spoken to Connor about it and to the team about it, but we’ll leave that one between us,” stated Ford.

The lighting issues at Dewsbury’s Tetley’s Stadium affected not only the pitch but the York changing room too, which was in darkness throughout the course of the day.

“I was really happy with our side’s mentality,” added Ford. “We’ve come here today and there’s no lights in our dressing room.

“We’ve had to get changed in the dark, sit in the dark for an hour before the game, sit in the dark at half-time and we got showered in the dark.

“It’s a challenge that’s been thrown at us and I think that we’ve dealt with that admirably.

“There’s lots of positives for us today.”

Ford also took positives from the defensive work of his squad, which has looked solid throughout the pre-season campaign.

The coach added: “We pride ourselves on our defence and if you think in the last two games, we’ve conceded two tries from kicks, an intercept and a fall over try when on the field there were a number of players who aren’t going to play.

“So, I’m pretty pleased with what we’re doing defensively. And today I thought that even though we only scored one try, I thought that we were alright with the ball.

“I thought that we created a lot of opportunities, we looked far more organised and we created space on a very small field in difficult conditions.

“It’s strange because people will be worried because we’ve only scored once. But, I’m not (worried).”