Knights change three for Trailfinders test.

The Knights playing staff make three changes from the starting XV that defeated Bedford Blues last weekend as the team head to London to face Ealing Trailfinders tomorrow.

Simon Humberstone makes his first competitive start for the Club since March last year at fly-half, replacing Dec Cusack who is included on the bench.

The backs are otherwise unchanged and will hope to continue the fine form that has seen them touch down for fourteen of the side’s sixteen tries so far this campaign.

Upfront there are a couple of changes to the front row with Richard List returning on the loose head side for Robin Hislop who takes his place on the bench. Ben Hunter also makes his first start of the season at hooker switching with Harry Allen.

The rest of the pack is retained from last Saturday.

On the bench Joe Sproston returns to the match day squad having recently impressed in the A league with Newcastle Falcons ‘A’. Jarad Williams completes the forward replacements as a four three, forward back split is preferred on the bench again.

Kick off tomorrow is at 15:00 and, as ever, live text commentary will be available on twitter.

Knights; 15. Paul Jarvis, 14. Dougie Flockhart, 13. Mat Clark, 12. Lloyd Hayes, 11. Tyson Lewis, 10. Simon Humberstone, 9. Michael Heaney ©, 1. Richard List, 2. Ben Hunter, 3. WillGriff John, 4. Dave Nolan, 5. Glen Young, 6. Latu Makaafi, 7. Beau Robinson, 8. Alex Shaw 

Replacements; 16. Robin Hislop 17. Harry Allen 18. Joe Sproston 19. Jarad Williams 20. Sean Scanlon 21. Dec Cusack 22. Sam Edgerley

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Paul Cooke: Book signing & Q&A last chance to book.

Castle Park welcomes back Paul Cooke as the Knights former Skills & Backs Coach showcases his eagerly anticipated biography – Judas? The Story of Paul Cooke tomorrow evening.

Co-written by critically acclaimed broadcaster Adrian Durham, the biography details Cookie’s infamous switch from Hull FC to Hull KR and the aftermath that followed. The book goes on to give an in-depth account of Paul’s controversial, yet fascinating, dealings both on and off the pitch and is a must read a self-respecting fan of either rugby code!

Tommorow night [October 20th], 7:30pm start, Paul and Adrian will discuss Cookie’s story in person and partake in a Q&A in the Lansdowne Suite of the Clubhouse. There will also be opportunity to purchase your own copy of Judas? and have it signed by the man himself.

Tickets for the event cost just £10 which includes a pie & pea supper and you can book your tickets until 5pm today by calling 01302 831388 or emailing emajor@castle-park.co.uk.

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30% off online tickets for Knights v Nottingham.

Take advantage of our exclusive, online only, offer and receive 30% off tickets for this Saturday’s fixture –  Knights vs Nottingham Rugby.

Buying online tickets couldn’t be simpler, click for video explainer, and for one game only fans can receive a 30% discount on online ticket purchases simply by entering the code NOTTS30 when prompted at the checkout.

The offer will run until midnight on October 6th and is only available for tickets purchased through the online ticketing system.

If you require any further information about purchasing tickets online call 01302 831388 or email mcasey@castle-park.co.uk

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KNIGHTS JOIN FORCES WITH DENTON & NICKELS

Denton & Nickels become the latest organisation team up with the Knights for the 2016/17 season.

Locally based Denton & Nickels Ltd provide complete Construction Services across the North & East of the UK to both public and private sector organisations; constructing sustainable communities – places where people live, work, learn, meet, travel, have fun and are cared for.

Denton & Nickels’ team of qualified and highly skilled trades’ people deliver building and maintenance projects (including mechanical and electrical trades) across the region. With a dedicated customer service team developing long-term relationships, Denton & Nickels pride themselves on high levels of repeat business and the ability to invest and grow with customers.

Denton & Nickels today have a vast client base spread over Yorkshire and Lincolnshire, with a premium portfolio of quality trades persons, and an office structure to continue the ever required communication both client and operative on the ground.

Commenting on the companies backing of the Knights Brian O’Sullivan, Marketing Manager, said. “We have long been passionate about developing ties with the local sporting community and Doncaster Knights embody many of the values we foster as a business. The Knights’ success last season highlighted the thirst for rugby union in the area to us and we are proud to have our branding on display at Castle Park.

Denton & Nickels company logo is now emblazoned on the sleeve on the Knights playing kit and Commercial Manager Kris Turner-West is delighted to have the company on board. “Having the support of a local business like Denton & Nickels is very encouraging as we set out on our new Championship season. There are clear synergies between the way our two organisations wish to work with a strong focus on the community and the local area. We thank Denton & Nickels for their support and look forward to a successful season together.”

For more information on the wide range of services Denton & Nickels offer head to their website – dentonnickels.co.uk or call 01302 343276.

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Doncaster Knights vs Nottingham Rugby: Hospitality Experience.

Enjoy the Castle Park hospitality experience as the Knights host Nottingham in Greene King IPA Championship Round Six [October 8th].

Hospitality places and tables are now on sale for the Knights feature clash with Nottingham in the Clubhouse Suite of the De Mulder Stand.

Boasting a private bar facility and a glass fronted view of the Castle Park pitch, the Clubhouse Suite creates the perfect back drop to take in a day’s sport on the field whilst building new relationships and cementing existing ones off it.

A Hospitality table includes; a three course meal for all party members, prime seating in the De Mulder Lloyd stand, preferential parking, match day programmes and an exclusive pre-match interview with a member of the Doncaster Knights first team.

Tables up to 12 persons are available now for £400 + VAT and individual places are also available for £40 + VAT per head. 

Telephone Doncaster Knights on 01302 831388 or email commercial@castle-park.co.uk for more information or to book your table now.

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Flockhart encouraged by Knights fast finish.

Knights goal-kicking winger Dougie Flockhart has enjoyed a good start to the season both on and off the field. 

Dougie continues to combine his playing role with that of the Knights Head of Strength & Conditioning and scored the first try during Saturday’s 30-22 victory over Bedford Blues; adding a further 10 points from the kicking tee.

A late Knights surge, with two tries in the final ten minutes, secured victory against the Blues at the weekend. It was a similar tale against Rotherham a fortnight before and the 31-year-old says he is happy with the Knights current levels of fitness.  “Even though the boys only had a short pre-season they are certainly fitter than they were last year and stronger. The players we’ve bought are fit and strong as well but they’ve had to up their game to get to the level of the boys that have already been here.

“We’re looking very strong towards the end of games which is something we’re very pleased about.”

Maybe not all players though; “Quigs [Colin Quigley] still remains in his own fitness category, my main aim for him is just getting him to forty and I’m not talking about minutes.”

On the field Dougie is part of an extremely competitive looking Doncaster back three.

The backs have scored 14 tries already this season meaning there is a lot of competition for places but the winger believes that is no bad thing. “You have to be on top of your game all the time because you will get found out if you’re not quite up to scratch.

“I won’t look to change anything to my game specifically due to the competition just make everything sharper.”

“The way we play now, as a back three, we feel like we’re going to score every game; its exciting. We feel like we’re going to get our hands on the ball and teams don’t know what we’re going to do.”

“We’re a lot more mature than the forwards, they used to give us a load of stick last year about them scoring all the tries but now thing have switched around we tend to rise above it.”

This Saturday the Knights head to West London to face Ealing Trailfinders; a 17-17 draw was the outcome from the last meeting at Vallis Way and Flockhart is expecting another stiff test this weekend. “Ealing have got a good team, they’ve a lot of quality out wide, a lot of good options with good championship experience. 

“They’re a bit like us in that they will look to put width on the ball and play rugby so we know we’re going to have to be on our game to get the outcome we want.”

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Late surge secures five-point win.

Knights 30 – 22 Bedford

The Knights made it three wins on the spin with a determined victory over a dangerous Bedford Blues side at Castle Park.

It was a rather cagey affair at Castle Park with the outcome unknown until the dying moments. Both teams punished mistakes from the other and it was the visitors who held the lead until a gutsy finish from the Knights secured victory.

The first half started Doncaster’s way, the Knights looked on song and really tested the Blues who fell foul of the laws as they tried to contain the onslaught. Dougie Flockhart was happy to take the points on offer and opened the scoring with an on target penalty seven minutes in.

The Knights continued to test the Bedford defence with nippy phase play and the pressure resulted in more indiscipline. A series of penalties put the Knights in range and a well-secured line out set up an attacking platform in the visitors 22m. Possession was spun wide where Paul Jarvis collected it deep and carried at pace, the full back was stopped just short of the line but found Dougie Flockhart in support who dived over in the corner.

A frantic spell of play from the restart gave Bedford an immediate response. Second-row Glen Young split the defence with a charging down field carry and was brought down just over the halfway line. The Knights quickly tried to work the ball out wide but the hastiness cost them as a loose pass allowed Bedford fly-half Jake Sharp to intercept and break with the ball showing a clean pair of heels to score in the corner, 8-5.

Doncaster looked stunned following Sharp’s try and nearly gifted Bedford another shortly after. Pressure at the scrum forced a hurried pass from Michael Heaney that Lloyd Hayes was unable to take on his own five metre line only to be pounced on by scrum half Jordan Burns over the line. Play was brought back for off-side much to the relief of the home faithful.

Bedford finished the half playing with much more purpose than they had shown throughout the opening half an hour and made it pay late into the first half. After coming  painfully close to weathering the Bedford storm, holding the ball up over the line on the 41st minute, no.8 Jason Hill was able to get over the try-line from the resulting scrum; 10-8 at the break.

The Knights returned from the dressing room in better shape. Quick clean ball from the forwards gave the likes of Mat Clark, Lloyd Hayes and Paul Jarvis good platforms to attack and it didn’t take long until a gap appeared. From a centerfield scrum Clark hit a fantastic line off Heaney which saw the midfielder sprint clear straight under the posts. Flockhart added a long range penalty not long after to put the Knights into an 18-10 lead.

Flockhart had a chance to extend the Donny lead further not long after the restart as he spearheaded an attack the really should have been swung wide into heavy traffic. Bedford were able to turn over possession and seized the opportunity to storm up the pitch, finally scoring after some sloppy defending let Ollie Dodge run through before passing to Tom Farrell who went under the post, 18-17.

The try knocked the Knights off their game and a degree of panic crept into the home play with the usually solid Doncaster defence all of a sudden looking porous. Full back Michael LeBourgeois was allowed to break, Mat Clark scrambled back to tackle but as the visitors recycled Clark was pinged for a ruck offense and sin binned. 

Bedford punished Doncaster immediately, pushing a driving maul over the try-line; Substitute Jacob Fields with the try, 22-18.

With a man deficit and the clock against them the signs were bleak for the Knights. However, as has often been the case with this side, they produced some of their finest play with their backs to the walls.

A fine driving maul from the Knights pack rumbled downfield, crossing the 22m and heading towards the try line at a rate of knots. The Blues clambered to quell the drive and eventually did but gave up a penalty in the process which also saw back row Ben Adams yellow carded. It was now Doncaster’s turn to make use of the man advantage, shoving the home pack over the line with Latu Makaafi claiming the score at the back of the maul.

Victory, and a four-try bonus point, was secured just two minutes from time with a well-worked set play. Tyson Lewis took an inside ball from Simon Humberstone to race downfield, the winger then produced a well-timed a pass to the onrushing Jarvis who outstripped his coverage to get over in the corner. Dougie Flockhart added the extras with a fine conversion to end a profitable afternoon for the Knights.

Knights; 15. Paul Jarvis, 14. Dougie Flockhart, 13. Mat Clark, 12. Lloyd Hayes, 11. Tyson Lewis, 10. Declan Cusack (Simon Humberstone 69’), 9. Michael Heaney © (Sam Edgerley 69’), 1. Robin Hislop (Richard List 55’), 2. Harry Allen (Benjamin Hunter 58’), 3. WillGriff John (Colin Quigley 55’), 4. Dave Nolan (Matthew Challinor 75’), 5. Glen Young, 6. Latu Makaafi, 7. Beau Robinson, 8. Alex Shaw 

Replacements; 16. Richard List 17. Ben Hunter 18. Colin Quigley 19. Matt Challinor 20. Sean Scanlon 21. Simon Humberstone 22. Sam Edgerley

Tries; Flockhart 20’, Clark 42’, Makaafi 72’, Jarvis 78’. 

Conv; Flockhart 42’, 78’

Pens; Flockhart 7’, 49’

Blues; 15. Michael Le Bourgeois (c), 14. Pat Tapley, 13. Tom Farrell, 12. Ollie Dodge (Myles Dorrian 78’), 11. Dean Adamson, 10. Jake Sharp, 9. Jordan Burns, 1. Hayden Thompson-Stringer, 2. George Edgson (Jacob Fields 49’), 3. Dave Spelman (Billy Walker 49’), 4. Mike Howard, 5. Will Carrick-Smith, 6. Justin Blanchet, 7. Ben Adams, 8. Jason Hill (Josh Buggea 47’)

Replacements; 16. Jacob Fields, 17. Camilo Parilli-Ocampo, 18. Billy Walker, 19. Ed Taylor, 20. Josh Buggea, 21. Tom Whiteley, 22. Myles Dorrian 

Tries; Sharp 21’, Hill 40’, Farrell 57’, Fields 61’

Conv; Sharp 57’

Attendance 1,072.

Written by Connor Hickinbottom.

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