County Champions

The Phoenix picked up a 24th straight win of the season on Saturday, defeating heath 15-20, having wrapped up the Yorkshire Division One title last Saturday.
A 58-17 victory away at Bridlington last weekend before learning that second placed Malton & Norton had lost out to Yarnbury, sealed the Championship for Castle Park’s thriving amateur section. It is the second promotion for the undefeated Phoenix in three years and DRFC Rugby Development Manager Ants Posa, who is one of the side’s coaches, believes the future looks very promising as he recalls on what has been a superb season.
Everything started back in summer last year, Ryan [Peacey] and I talked at length about the type of rugby we wanted to play and decided that we wanted to play a brand that would not only work to our strengths but enthuse young guys wanting to play the game as we were really keen to ensure that playing rugby with Phoenix is about enjoyment not just winning. Instilling the new ideas has taken a little bit of time but if I’m honest it really has all clicked in the last four or five games and our results have shown that, we’re playing an expansive brand and it’s good to watch.
Now that the league is wrapped up we are hoping to give even more young guys a chance in the 1st XV ahead of next season and strengthen that player pathway through the club, which is vital moving forward. A club is only as strong as it’s depth and some of the guys who are going well in the seconds will get a shot to show what they can do this weekend. The whole system seems to be working at the moment it’s not just a case of the First XV. The seconds have won their league, undefeated, and have a cup campaign to look forward to, the colts have won their league and have a cup final coming up…if Carlsberg did seasons!
A couple of the younger lads have been involved in the Yorkshire Under 20s this season with Glen Kenworthy and myself and we are now in the National Final, it is great to have some Donny representation there.
The league up for us is North East Division One we’re already talking and planning ahead of next season, our focus is to keep the player pathway open and obvious for the young lads coming through. We’ll have another crop of Colts eligible for senior rugby who I’ll guide to play with Phoenix at Castle Park, not just for the stand out players but for all those who want to play rugby in Doncaster, it’s just as important to keep guys in the Club enjoying the sport as it is to develop the more talented guys.
At the end of this season one of our longest standing servants and former Knight, Scott Plevey is hanging up his boots and he will be sorely missed. Scott has been a massive part of the Club on and off the field and replacing him will be very, very tricky.
Off the field the social side of the Club is going very strong, we’re heading on tour to the land of my ancestors in a couple of months, Croatia! It is so important that the social side of the Club is strong and that it doesn’t get lost as we strive for more success on the field. We want to keep the Phoenix rugby ethos that has been present for years going strong.
For me this whole process is long overdue, all the playing sections are on board and aligned. Not just the Phoenix but the Knights and the junior section are all working towards a common goal. We have something very special here and it is a very exciting time.

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Nott our day.

Knights 25 v Nottingham 28

The Knights tricky head to head record with Nottingham continued as the Green and Whites put an end to the Knights unbeaten run.

On a sunny spring day it was Nottingham who started the brighter, no doubt motivated by fellow play-off hopefuls Rotherham Titans’ victory over Moseley the night before. An early resistance to stay on the right side of the offside line from the Knights gave visitors a couple of early penalties and on three minutes Tiff Eden opened the scoring with an on target kick.

 

The penalty sparked a bit of life into the Knights and on their first pertinent attack of the day saw winger Ed Styles sin binned after he deliberately knocked on a would be pass to Tyson Lewis. Flockhart looked to level the scores with the resulting penalty but his effort bounced back off the upright.

 

The wind was having quite an effect on both sides kicking game but the visitors seemed to deal with it much better in the early stages of the game. On the back of another offside penalty Eden stuck the Knights in the corner and a well formed driving line out rumbled ominously toward the Knights line. The Knights packed looked to ebb the drive but Notts weren’t to be denied and flanker Tom Calladine touched down for the games first score.

 

Donny were unable to take advantage of Nottingham sin binnning and the score remained at 3-8 until Styles returned to the pitch. The hosts struggled to hold on to possession and in addition Knights winger and Championship top scorer Dougie Flockhart had an off day with the boot. Despite this it was the Knights who registered next, Nottingham had tried their best to avoid engaging the Knights driving maul but on 35 minutes Donny were able to get their breakdown formed. Having driven forward the ball was spun in field where Tyson Lewis broke the line before feeding Tom Palu who touched down. Dougie made the conversion, 7-8.

 

Nottingham had the final say of the opening half after Richard List was pinged for a high tackle on hooker Shaun Malton, with 40 minutes up Eden went for points and made no mistake.

 

The second half started with signs of improvement and the Knights made it tell through the forwards. A scrum penalty was put to touch by Ume Fosita and the pack rumbled over having patiently driven forward, skipper Michael Hills emerged with the ball to put his side ahead by a point.

Indiscipline was the Knights downfall for the next score, although the home fans will feel as if they got a raw deal with some of the refereeing decisions. Four successive penalties, all kicked to corner, resulted in firstly a yellow card for skipper Hills and then a second try for Tom Calladine in the following phase. Eden added the extras, 15-18.

 

Both coaches made a number of changes around the hour mark which disrupted the flow of the game, the only further score before a frantic final 10 minutes coming courtesy of another Eden penalty following a controversial refereeing decision. What looked like a no arm tackle on Ume Fosita ended in a penalty to Nottingham and a yellow card for Brad Field who had only been on the pitch for a handful of minutes.

 

Trailing by six the Knights needed to produce something quickly and they did through Ume Fosita. The fly half found a gap where there didn’t appear to be one to break before feeding Clark who raced home. Flockhart was unable to add the extras but the Knights trailed by just a point and restored to a full compliment momentum was with the home side.

 

The next play ultimately sealed the game for Notts, failure to deal with the restart saw possession coughed up by the Knights, full back Billy Robinson broke down the short side and got a clean run in to the try line. Eden converted to reestablish the visitors eight-point lead.

 

Despite needing two scores the Knights refused to give up and went straight back on the attack. A nice miss pass from Field found Jarvis out wide who broke speedily before feeding Flockhart to touch down, the Scotsman could not convert his effort, 25-28.

 

Unsurprisingly the visitors kicked the restart as long as they could and after several carries Field tried a long kick downfield for his outside backs. The effort bounced in to touch the end the game.

 

Despite the defeat the game was not a complete loss as the late Flockhart try secured two valuable points for the Knights who leapfrog Bedford into 9th place.

 

 

Knights XV; 15 Paul Jarvis, 14 Dougie Flockhart, 13 George Catchpole, 12 Mat Clark, 11 Tyson Lewis, 10 Ume Fosita, 9 Tomasi Palu (Brad Field 55’), 1, Richard List (Tom Davies 56’), 2 Ben Hunter (Harry Thacker 55’), 3 Colin Quigley (WillGriff John 69’), 4 Tyler Hotson (Will Foden 78’), 5 Jon Phelan, 6 Matt Challinor, 7 Michael Hills ©, 8) Phil Eggleshaw

Replacements; 16 Tom Davies, 17 Harry Thacker, 18 Will Foden, 19 WillGriff John 20 Bevon Armitage, 21 Paul Roberts, 22 Brad Field.

 

Tries; Palu 36’, Hills 46’, Clark 74, Flockhart 78’

Conv; Flockhart 36’

Pens; Flockhart 59’

Sin bin Hills 53’, 62’

 

15) Billy Robinson?14) Pila Iongi?13) Heath Stevens?12) Javiah Pohe?11) Ed Styles?10) Tiff Eden?9) Sean Romans, 1) George Porter (Jon Vickers 68’)?2) Shaun Malton (Michael Holford 75’)?3) Conor Carey?4) Toby Freeman (Tom Price 68’)?5) Dan Montagu (c)?6) Rupert Cooper?7) Tom Calladine?8) Paul Grant

Replacements: 16) Jon Vickers?17) Michael Holford?18) Campese Ma’afu?19) Tom Price?20) Matt Everard?21) Alex Smit?22) Will Maisey

 

Tries; Calladine 12’, 54, Robinson 75’

Conv; Eden 55’, 75’

Pens; Eden 3’, 40’, 62’

Sin bin; Ed Stevens 7

Attendance: 1,473

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Knights side for Notts clash announced.

DoR Clive Griffiths makes a hand full of changes from last week ahead of Nottingham’s visit to Castle Park.

In the backs George Catchpole returns from a run in the Leicester Tigers first XV to replace fellow Tiger Terrence Hepetema with Mat Clark moving to inside centre. Tongan duo Tomasi Palu and Ume Fosita continue in the half backs and it is a familiar looking back three of Jarvis, Flockhart and Lewis.

 

Upfront Clive has gone with the same tight five as last Friday and in the back row Michael Hills returns from illness to his usual position at open side flanker. Matt Challinor continues at six with Phil Eggleshaw promoted to the starting XV at number eight.

 

On the bench Tom Davies and WillGriff John join young Tiger Harry Thacker to provide front row cover. Will Foden is included in the match day twenty-two for the second successive week and will hope to make an impact from the bench. Bevon Armitage, Brad Field and Paul Roberts make up the back replacements and complete the squad.

 

Knights XV; 15 Paul Jarvis, 14 Dougie Flockhart, 13 George Catchpole, 12 Mat Clark, 11 Tyson Lewis, 10 Ume Fosita, 9 Tomasi Palu, 1, Richard List, 2 Ben Hunter, 3 Colin Quigley, 4 Tyler Hotson, 5 Jon Phelan, 6 Matt Challinor, 7 Michael Hills ©, 8) Phil Eggleshaw

Replacements; 16 Tom Davies, 17 Harry Thacker, 18 Will Foden, 19 WillGriff John 20 Bevon Armitage, 21 Paul Roberts, 22 Brad Field,

Kick off tomorrow is 14:30. #COYK

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The Griff report.

The Knights made it six straight games without defeat last Friday as they earned a hard-fought draw away at third placed London Scottish. Donny lead until late in the game, when a late try from Matty Williams leveled the scores.

Reflecting on the clash Clive expressed mixed sentiments. “When you consider the chances we created, and the chances they created I guess it leveled itself out over the 80 minutes.

“It’s always galling to draw, or lose, from a winning position but by the same token I think a lot of supporters would have taken that result had it been offered on Friday morning.

“I was concerned that there might have been a big of an emotional hangover from the high of the Bristol win but to be fair the boys put that to bed and got on with the task.

“It was a battling draw and the biggest thing for me was that the group showed terrific heart and came through another difficult test.”

The result put an 11-point gap between the Knights and bottom placed Plymouth Albion, but Griff will not be making any assumptions and insists we’re not safe yet. “We know we still probably need one more win to secure our place in this league, that would mean Plymouth would have to win every game and they have a difficult run, with Bristol at their place and a derby game with Pirates.

“We also know we are within touching distance but until we are over the finishing line you never say never and we will need to work hard on Saturday to get a result against a very dominant Nottingham side on the back of a good result against Moseley.”

Whilst has been plenty to celebrate in the Knights recent form but it has not come without knock backs and Clive faces a growing injury list on the back of two bruising encounters. “We have been dealt a couple of injury blows from the last couple of games.

“Alex Shaw is the latest to be added to the list along with Ollie Stedman. Vili Veikoso is still unavailable as is Latu Makaafi so three of our back row are down which is unfortunate.

“We have got Harry Thacker back from Leicester this weekend and Jack Bergmanas can fill in at hooker also but we are definitely thin in the back row.

“Hopefully we will be able to get a couple back in action shortly but that will depend on what the scans show, so we’ll wait and see and might have to go back to call on our big brothers from Welford Road.’

Nottingham were worthy winners when the Knights travelled to Meadow Lane in December something that the team are keen to avenge on Saturday.

“The away game before Christmas has been mentioned in passing this week for sure, it’s been our heaviest defeat of the season, a 21-point deficit.

“We’ve had a slight review of that game and it showed how easy we made it for them and we addressed that, we know what they’re going to bring to the table and it’s going to be a really tough encounter.

“They want to stay in that fourth position and will be gunning for another win and we have our own, very different, reasons for needing the win so it should be a humdinger”

Kick off on Saturday in 14:30, tickets are available on the gate or by calling 01302 831388 [option 5]. #COYK

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Book your cup final tickets & pre-match meal now!

The Knights face Championship league leaders Worcester Warriors in the final of the British and Irish Cup at Castle Park on Good Friday [April 3rd, KO 17:10].

Having upset the formbook to squeeze past another Championship heavyweight, Bristol Rugby, the Knights will now face Dean Ryan’s Worcester at Castle Park for the British and Irish Cup. It is the first time the Knights have reached the final of the competition and the game will be televised live on Sky Sports.

 

Unfortunately we are unable to offer the final as part of the Knights Season Ticket but we are delighted to announce that we are repeating the discounted ticket prices from the semi-final.

 

Adult entry for the De Mulder Lloyd Stand is just £10 and concessions are £5. Entry for the Terrace and Brewster Pratap Community Stand are £5 across the board with Under 16s going free with a paying adult.

 

We are also pleased that announce that all seats in the De Mulder Lloyd stand can be pre-bought, so all Season Ticket holders can reserve your usual seat. This must be done by April 2nd and all unreserved seats will go on general sale on game day.

 

We also have an Easter themed pre-match supporters meal with our sacrosanct Cow Pie naturally being the pinnacle. Book you match Tickets and pre-match meal place by calling reception on 01302 831388 [Option 5] or by popping in to Castle Park Monday-Friday [09:00-17:00].

 

Image courtesy of Kate Fisher.

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All square at The Athletic Ground

London Scottish 13 Doncaster Knights 13

Despite the respective league standings, this Friday evening fixture at the Richmond Athletic Ground saw two of the Championship’s in form sides lock horns. The final score of 13-13 was probably a fair reflection of the game across the 80 minutes, though the Knights may rue failing to capitalize on two second half yellow cards for the hosts.

 

The Knights were dealt a cruel blow before they even left Castle Park as skipper Michael Hills was struck down with a sickness bug and would not travel. This meant Tyler Hotson was promoted from the bench, Will Foden was called in to the squad and Matt Challinor took over captaincy from blindside flanker with the back row shuffling accordingly.

 

The game started at a frantic pace, which was maintained for the majority, both sides created opportunities but lacked execution at vital moments. The Knights suffered a set back when centre Terrence Hepetema was forced off with what looked to be a knee injury. This meant Paul Roberts came on at stand off with Ume Fosita shuffling to inside centre.

 

The first points of the game were scored after ten minutes and they went the way of the hosts. A penalty in the Knights half was sweetly struck by fly half Peter Lydon, 0-3.

 

The Knights reaction was almost immediate. Pressure on the Scottish offensive line forced a knock on deep in their own half and with scrum advantage Roberts sent a well-weighted chip towards Tyson Lewis. The bounce of the ball evaded the winger but it would not mater as Donny were in moments later. Nice vision from Tyler Hotson saw the second row pick from a ruck and sprint through a gap to touchdown against his former teammates. Dougie added the extras, 3-7.

 

The score stayed the same until half time; both sides created opportunities and whilst Scottish enjoyed the greater share of possession Donny arguably looked the more dangerous of the two with ball in hand. The hosts’ pace was a constant threat and they looked to move possession quickly to wingers Miles Mantella and Matty Williams but produced little to genuinely threaten the Knights line.

 

The next best chance of the first half fell to the Knights when Mat Clark seized a loose ball on the blind side of a ruck. The centre set off from deep within his own half but was eventually caught by Mantella and forced in to touch just a couple of metres from the Scottish line.

 

Scottish scored the first points of the second half but were dealt a double blow shortly after when a second Lydon penalty was quickly followed by two yellow cards. Firstly, a dump tackle on Tyson Lewis by Lee Millar was judged dangerous and the full back was sent to the bin then Lewis Ludlow followed him for killing the ball with the Knights closing in on the Exiles line. Dougie slotted the resulting penalty to make the score 6-10.

 

As the second half progressed the pace of the game remained frantically high and opportunities came at both ends but the Knights could not make their numerical advantage pay.

 

With both sides restored to XV, Scottish were pinged at the scrum but Flockhart saw his effort sail wide of the right post, the winger got another chance moments later however and made no mistake after Scottish were caught offside following a 22 metre restart. The Penalty gave Donny a seven-point advantage with just ten minutes left to play.

 

The Knights needed to replicate last weekend’s superb late defensive rally to pull off a second high profile win in as many weeks but The Exiles had other ideas. Good vision and a nicely weighted kick saw stand off Lydon chip ahead of winger Matty Williams. The bounce sat up perfectly for the former Knight and he collected to touch down. Lydon converted from the touchline to level the scores.

 

Both sides pushed in the game’s closing stages and Scottish even attempted an audacious drop goal from distance but the game ended with the honours even. The draw sees the Knights close the gap on 9th placed Bedford to just a point as the Blues lost out to Cornish Pirates.

 

Next week the Knights are in Castle Park action versus Nottingham hoping to trouble another promotion chasing side.

 

London Scottish XV; 15) Lee Millar, 14) Matt Williams, 13) Kieron Moffat, 12) Matt Hawke (Mike Doneghan 68’),11) Miles Mantella, 10) Peter Lydon, 9) Jamie Stevenson, 1) James Hallam (Mark Lilley 54’), 2) David Cherry (Adam Kwasnicki 54’), 3) Ben Prescott (Lovejoy Chawatama 55’), 4) Josh Thomas Brown (Adam Preocanin 60’), 5) James Phillips, 6) Gregor Gillanders (Chris Walker 60’), 7) Lewis Ludlow, 8) Mark Bright (c).

 

Replacements; 16) Mark Lilley) 17) Adam Kwasnicki, 18) Lovejoy Chawatama, 19) Adam Preocanin, 20) Chris Walker, 21) Matt Heeks, 22) Mike Doneghan.

 

Tries; Williams 71’

Conv; Lydon 71’

Pens; Lydon 11’, 46’

Sin bin; Lee Millar 47’, Lewis Ludlow 51’

Knights XV 15) Paul Jarvis, 14) Dougie Flockhart, 13) Mat Clark, 12) Terrence Hepetema (Paul Roberts 7’), 11) Tyson Lewis, 10) Ume Fosita, 9) Tomasi Palu (Brad Field 71’), 1) Richard List (Tom Davies 62’), 2) Ben Hunter (Harry Thacker 70’), 3) Colin Quigley (WillGriff John 62’), 4) Tyler Hotson, 5) Jon Phelan, 6) Matt Challinor ©, 7) Alex Shaw (Will Foden 74’), 8) Ollie Stedman (Phil Eggleshaw 75’)

Replacements; 16) Tom Davies, 17) WillGriff John, Blank) Will Foden, 19) Harry Thacker, 20) Phil Eggleshaw, 21) Paul Roberts.22) Brad Field.

Tries; Hotson 14’

Conv; Flockhart 14’

Pens; Flockhart 52’, 69’

 

 

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Griff rings the changes for Scottish showdown.

The Knights return to Championship action tomorrow evening as they head to the Capital to face play-off hopefuls London Scottish.

Having won four of their last five games in all competition, the Knights will be hoping to cause a second upset in as many weeks as they travel to the Richmond Athletic Ground to face the third placed Exiles.

For the trip Clive makes a handful of changes from last weekend’s semi-final. In the backs Terrence Hepetema returns to Castle Park having played in the LV Cup semi-final with Leicester Tigers last weekend and partners Mat Clark in midfield. Tomasi Palu is recalled for the clash at scrum half with Brad Field dropping to the bench.

In the pack Richard List is the sole survivor from last weekend’s starting front row with Ben Hunter and Colin Quigley returning in place of Vili Veikoso, who picked up an injury in last Saturday’s semi-final, and WillGriff John. Matt Challinor will start at lock alongside Jon Phelan and Alex Shaw reclaims his usual position at number eight with last Saturday’s man of the match Ollie Stedman shifting to the blindside flank. As ever, skipper Michael Hills start in the seven jersey.

England U20s hooker Harry Thacker is named amongst the replacements with Tom Davies and WillGriff John completing the front row cover. Latu Makaafi is also unavailable due to an injury sustained late in last weekend’s clash so Tyler Hotson and Phil Eggleshaw provide further forward firepower from the bench and half back cover is provided courtesy of Brad Field and Paul Roberts.

Knights XV 15) Paul Jarvis, 14) Dougie Flockhart, 13) Mat Clark, 12) Terrence Hepetema, 11) Tyson Lewis, 10) Ume Fosita, 9) Tomasi Palu, 1) Richard List, 2) Ben Hunter, 3) Colin Quigley, 4) Matt Challinor, 5) Jon Phelan, 6) Ollie Stedman, 7) Michael Hills ©, 8) Alex Shaw.

Replacements; 16) Tom Davies, 17) WillGriff John, 18) Tyler Hotson, 19) Harry Thacker, 20) Phil Eggleshaw, 21) Paul Roberts., 22) Brad Field.

London Scottish XV; 15) Lee Millar, 14) Matt Williams, 13) Matthew Hawke, 12) Harry Sloan, 11) Miles Mantella, 10) Peter Lydon, 9) Jamie Stevenson, 1) James Hallam, 2) David Cherry, 3) Ben Prescott, 4) Josh Thomas Brown, 5) James Phillips, 6) Gregor Gillanders, 7) Lewis Ludlow, 8) Mark Bright (c).

 

Replacements; 16) Mark Lilley) 17) Adam Kwasnicki, 18) Lovejoy Chawatama, 19) Adam Preocanin, 20) Chris Walker, 21) Matt Heeks, 22) Mike Doneghan.

 

KO tomorrow is 19:45, there are still places on the Knights Supporters Coach which departs Castle Park at 1pm, to book your place on the please email johnlowe0002@gmail.com, or text John on 07977112706

 

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Colts league final tonight!

The successful DRFC Colts have their final league game of the season versus Sheffield Tigers tonight at Castle Park.
The league leading Doncaster Colts need just one competition point from this evening’s fixture to be crowned Champions and on top of that a win will also secure a home play off versus the winners of the North East Yorkshire league in the League winners’ play-off.
Post match the Lansdowne Suite of the Clubhouse will be open and everyone is invited for a drink or two to celebrate a great season for the DRFC mini/junior graduates.
The achievements of this team are all the more remarkable as they were on the brink of not existing at the start of the season and the success is a testament to each young man involved. These players are future DRFC players and members so please come down and cheers them on this evening.
Kick off 7-30pm.

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Knights brush aside Bristol to reach final

Doncaster Knights 27 Bristol Rugby 22

Doncaster Knights pull off a stunning, against the odds victory to knock Championship league leaders Bristol out of the British and Irish Cup.

The Knights welcomed Bristol to Castle Park for the second of back-to-back home clashes against the West Country, this time bidding for a place in the British and Irish Cup Final. The Club had never previously reached the final and in Bristol they faced a side that had lost just once all season.

The task was made even harder after a disastrous opening couple of minutes. Having fielded the kick off a large looming up and under was returned down the blindside by winger Bris David Lemi. The Knights defence was caught napping and Lemi found flanker Nick Koster in support who raced away and touched down. Nicky Robinson added the extras and the Knights found themselves 7-0 behind with the game barely a minute old.

Thankfully, things got considerably better after the initial shock and the Knights took confidence from their destructive driving lineout. A series of drives multiple produced penalties and when Fosita put the forwards in the corner another well formed maul saw Donny drive infield and eventually over the line. Richard List emerged with the ball and Dougie Flockhart made no mistake with the conversion, 7-7 after ten minutes.

The rest of the first half was very level; Bristol arguably enjoyed the better of territory and with the wind were able to nullify any good play from the Knights with some astute kicking. The visitors did create pressure with ball in hand also and added to their total with a penalty when the Knights were pinged for not releasing.

More pressure for the Knights came shortly after when they gave up a free kick at a scrum on their own five metre which was taken quickly. Jack Lam crashed towards the Knights line but was held up in goal. From the following scrum Ume Fosita did fantastically to drop on a loose ball and kick clear.

The scores were level once again shortly after when referee Andrew Jackson brought play back for a penalty just as it looked as Flockhart might be about to break. The winger was successful with the kick, 10-10.

With ten minutes left to go in the first half the Championship league leaders began to turn to the screw and attacked smartly but just as the visitors clicked in to top gear the Knights struck. Great vision from Ollie Stedman saw the back rower intercept a Nicky Robinson pass and set off from 60 metres. With Jack Wallace and Charlie Amesbury in pursuit the number eight looked for support before putting his foot down to gallop over the line. Flockhart converted to give the Knights a ten-point lead.

The visitors created more chances before the half but it was the Knights who ended on the front foot. More dominant play by the Knights pack at the line out brought more penalties and a yellow card for tight head Anthony Perenise.

With a ten point and one man advantage the signs were positive for Donny but a start to the second period that mirrored the first quickly brought them back down to earth. Vili Veikoso broke impressively up field but a lack of support saw a penalty awarded to Bristol and Nicky Robinson kicked to the corner.

Now it was the turn of the visitors to employ the rolling maul, sucking in Knights forwards before zipping possession out wide with impressive speed. Tyson Lewis and Paul Jarvis tried to scramble across but were unable to prevent Amesbury from crossing in the corner.

Flockhart added his second penalty of the game moments after for an immediate response by the Knights following an infringement at the restart by Bris.

The penalty sparked the Knights back into life and when Brad Field produced an inch perfect box kick that bounced to touch just short of the Bristol Line Jon Phelan leaped the highest to steal possession. After a couple of attacking phases Stedman sent a clever grubber kick towards Dougie Flockhart’s wing. Scrum half Craig Hampson raced across to kick the ball dead and give the Knights another lineout from close range. Having secured possession, unsurprisingly the ball was kept in the pack and they rumbled towards the try line at a rate of knots. Urged on by the vocal home support the forwards crashed into the goal area with skipper Michael Hills touching down, Dougie added the extras to make the score 27-15.

Bristol are not top of the league by chance and for the games closing quarter the Knights were subjected to a barrage of attacks. Time and time again the hosts came forward, notable surges coming from Ben Mosses and David Lemi but time and time again the Knights defence rose to the challenge. Mat Clark and Tyson Lewis both making tackles to prevent what would have been certain tries. Paul Jarvis was lost to the sin bin for slowing the ball on the floor but it wasn’t until the 67th minute that Bristol added to their score.

The continual waves of attack eventually took their toll when number eight Mitch Eadie slipped a tackle and raced over. Robinson converted to cut the gap to just five points and with time left on the clock.

The final ten minutes made for agonizing viewing for the home fans as a series of penalties, knocks on and scrums occurred deep in Donny territory but their resolve wouldn’t be broken. Superb work on the floor by the back row forced a penalty out of Eadie and it was fitting that the Knights saw the game out with a driving line out, having had such success with it all game. The hosts drove up to the half way before recycling the ball and carrying through the pack to eat up the clock. With final play called Bruno Bravo hoofed the ball into the De Mulder Lloyd stand to confirm the Knights place in the final.

A fantastic day for all connected to the Club and it means the Knights will take on Worcester in the British and Irish Cup final on Good Friday [KO 17:10] in front of the Sky Sport cameras.

 

Knights XV 15) Paul Jarvis, 14) Dougie Flockhart, 13) Mat Clark, 12) Bevon Armitage, 11) Tyson Lewis, 10) Ume Fosita, 9) Brad Field (Bruno Bravo 73’), 1) Richard List (Tom Davies 62’), 2) Vili Veikoso (Jack Bergmanas 71’), 3) WillGriff John (Colin Quigley 69’), 4) Tyler Hotson, 5) Jon Phelan, 6) Phil Eggleshaw (Latu Makaafi 58’), 7) Michael Hills, 8) Ollie Stedman.

Replacements; 16) Tom Davies, 17) Jack Bergmanas, 18) Latu Makaafi, 19) Colin Quigley, 20) Will Foden, 21) Paul Roberts, 22) Bruno Bravo.

Tries; List 9’, Stedman 32’, Hills 52’

Conv; Flockhart 9’, ’32, 52’

Pens; Flockhart 25, 45’

Sin bin; Paul Jarvis 54’

Bristol Rugby

15) Jack Wallace, 14) Charlie Amesbury, 13) Jack Tovey, 12) Ben Mosses, 11) David Lemi (George Watkins 60’), 10) Nicky Robinson, 9) Craig Hampson, 1) Kyle Traynor, 2) Ross McMillan (Rhys Lawrence 64’), 3) Anthony Perenise (Gaston Cortes 55’), 4) Ryan Jones (c), 5) Ben Glynn, 6) Nick Koster, 7) Jack Lam, 8) Mitch Eadie.

 

Replacements; 16) Rhys Lawrence, 17) Gaston Cortes, 18) Joe Joyce, 19) Josh Ovens, 20) Tim Turner, 21) Adrian Jarvis, 22) George Watkins.

 

Tries; Koster 1’, Amesbury 43’, Eadie 67’

Conv; Robinson 2’, 67’

Pens; Robinson 18’

Sin bin; Perenise.

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Dougie named Championship Player of the Month

Knights goal-kicking maestro Dougie Flockhart has been named as the Greene King IPA Championship Player of the Month for February.

Dougie picks up the accolade at the second time of asking after being nominated for the inaugural award back in September.

The Scotsman currently tops the league’s point scoring tally with 192 and was singled out by a panel of judges following his impressive performance against Cornish Pirates last month. The winger recorded a 20 point haul in the Knights’ 30-13 victory in Penzance, including the final try of the match.

Flockhart also sits top of the Championship kicking table with 22 successful conversions and 46 penalties, confirming his position as one of the league’s most prolific points scorers.

Dougie edged victory over London Scottish’ Peter Lydon, who came in a very close second. Worcester’s Ryan Mills claimed third, with Declan Cusack in fourth.

Speaking after the announcement Dougie said. “Thanks to everybody that voted for me, being fitness coach i can guarantee i didn’t get any votes from my teammates but it’s a great honour to win this award. Hopefully we can keep up our recent good form till the end of the season and secure our place in the Championship next year.”

When asked what was the secret behind his fine form with the boot this season Flockhart admitted it was all down to the tutelage of his fiancé Kay and i don’t think he was lying…..

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Women’s RWC at Castle Park

Last August England Women’s Rugby Captain Katy McLean lifted the Rugby World Cup trophy following her side’s 21-9 victory over Canada in the final and now the trophy is making it’s way to Castle Park.

The trophy will be showcased at Castle Park from 5pm on March 23rd as our successful new DRFC Under 15 girls train at the Club. All are welcome to come down and get a photo with the trophy and if you require any more details contact Lisa on LDavis@castle-Park.co.uk.

 

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