Carnegie claim stoppage time victory at Castle Park.

A stoppage-time converted try condemned Doncaster Knights to a 32-30 Championship defeat against fourth-placed Yorkshire Carnegie at Castle Park.

Just when it looked as though Knights – who had second-rower Nick Civetta sent-off in first-half stoppage time following a clash of heads with scrum-half Will Homer – had defied the odds to claim a 30-25 victory, Carnegie struck at the death.

They got on a roll from a lineout and Knights could do little to prevent hooker Joe Buckle from touching down to level the scores at 30-all.

Fly-half Alex Davies, who had kicked well all game, held his nerve to kick the winning conversion to complete a double for the Leeds side.

Buoyed by their impressive derby win at Clifton Lane, Knights made a confident start with flanker Jack Ram, who had his best game of the season, well to the fore.

It was no more than they deserved when fly-half Simon Humberstone kicked Knights into an early lead.

Knights continued to play an attractive brand of attacking rugby but couldn’t turn further pressure into points.

Such was Knights territorial dominance that it took Carnegie more than 15 minutes to breach their 22 – wing George Watkins going close in the corner during their first attacking sortie of note.

It was against the run of play when they took the lead.

After his forwards had drawn a blank when trying to force their way over from close range, Davies produced a neat grubber kick to the corner which led to full-back Chris Elder touching down near enough for the half-back to convert to make it 7-3.

Centre Tom Casson went close to a second try from another clever grubber kick by Davies over the line during Carnegie’s best spell of the half.

Knights quickly regained the initiative and were awarded a penalty try when Elder, who was subsequently sin-binned, was ruled to have deliberately knocked down prop Colin Quigley’s high pass meant for wing Curtis Wilson.

Davies levelled the scores at 10-10 with a penalty but Knights again got their noses in front.

Full-back Charlie Foley joined the line out wide just outside the Carnegie 22 and fed Wilson, who cut inside his marker and then surged past several other defenders to score for the fourth successive game.

Davies pegged three points back with a second penalty and would have given his side a 16-15 interval lead had he not pulled an injury-time effort wide.

Despite been a man down, Knights took the game to Carnegie upon the restart with Ram helping to create the position from which Wilson was held just short.

Knights remained on the attack and scrum-half Michael Heaney picked out centre Will Owen with a long pass.

Humberstone again added the extras and kicked another penalty to  open up a 25-13 lead.

Knights let their concentration slip and were punished when centre Andy Forsyth raced in out wide.

Carnegie, who had won their previous five league and cup games, grabbred a third try by Elder following some good handling down the right and with Davies again hitting the target the scores were level for a second time at 25-25.

Knights picked up a try-bonus point for the second league game in succession when skipper Michael Hills touched down for their fourth try from close range to make it 30-25.

Knights found themselves under almost constant pressure in the last ten minutes or so but some heroic defence managed to keep their line intact until Buckle sealed their fate.


Knights: Charlie Foley, Curtis Wilson, Mat Clark, Will Owen, Tyson Lewis (Morgan Eames 41), Simon Humberstone (Declan Cusack 78), Michael Heaney (Tom James 72), Richard List (Jack Bergmanas 63), David Nelson (Curtis Langdon 72) Colin Quigley (Joe Sprotson 63), Matt Challinor, Nick Civetta, Jack Ram, Michael Hills, Alex Shaw (Jason Hill 67),

Replacements: Curtis Langdon, Jack Bergmanas, Joe Sproston, Morgan Eames, Jason Hill, Tom James, Declan Cusack.

Tries: Pen try 20, Wilson 27, Owen 42, Hills 65

Cons: Humberstone 27, 42.

Pens:Humberstone 10, 56

Yorkshire Carnegie: Chris Elder, George Watkins, Andy Forsyth, Tom Casson (Fred Burdon 55), Stevie McColl, Alex Davies,Will Homer (Max Green 66), Marc Thomas, Joe Buckle, Charlie Beech, Jack Whetton, Mike Myerscough (Ollie Stedman 62), Ben West, Richard Mayhew (Josh Bainbridge 72), Richard Beck.

Replacements: Harry Newborn, Charlie Capps, James Thraves, Ollie Stedman, Josh Bainbridge, Max Green, Fred Burdon.

Tries: Elder 17, 62, Forysth 57, Buckle 80.

Cons: Davies 17,62, 80

Pens: Davies 24,34

Referee: Greg MacDonald

Attendance: 2003

Match report courtesy of Steve Hossack.

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The Doncaster Knights squad for tomorrow night’s Yorkshire derby against Yorkshire Carnegie at Castle Park has been named.

Clive Griffiths names a total of five changes from the side that beat Rotherham Titans last weekend, with 2 changes from the starting lineup.

Upfront Ben Hunter drops out of the squad, with David Nelson replacing Hunter at hooker, with Curtis Langdon named as a replacement.

The final change from the starting XV, see’s Paul Jarvis step out of the squad, with Charlie Foley replacing Jarvis at full back.

Jason Hill and Declan Cusack are named as replacements in the remaining changes from the Knights squad which defeated the Titans 19-36 last Saturday.

Kick off tomorrow is at 19:45 and, as always, live updates will be available on twitter.

Knights XV; 15) Charlie Foley, 14) Curtis Wilson, 13) Mat Clark, 12) Will Owen, 11) Tyson Lewis, 10) Simon Humberstone, 9) Michael Heaney, 1) Richard List, 2) David Nelson, 3) Colin Quigley, 4) Matt Challinor, 5) Nick Civetta, 6) Jack Ram, 7) Michael Hills ©, 8) Alex Shaw.

Replacements; 16) Curtis Langdon, 17) Jack Bergmanas, 18) Joe Sproston, 19) Morgan Eames, 20) Jason Hill, 21) Tom James, 22) Declan Cusack.

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SIGNING | Winger Klim early Christmas present.

The Knights are delighted to announce the signing of Namibian international Lesley Klim who joined up with his teammates for the very first time yesterday to watch the Knights derby win at Clifton Lane.

The 22-year-old winger arrives having most recently played for Windhoek based side Welwitschias, seen as a development side for the Namibian national side, who compete in the South African domestic competition the Currie Cup and previously in the Vodacom Cup.

Lesley broke into the Namibian national side in June and has made an impressive start to his international career. After making his debut versus Spain, Klim has gone on to get seven caps and has touched down for three tries including a brace versus Senegal.

Standing at 6ft 2in, Les played a crucial role in Namibia’s defence of the Rugby Africa Gold Cup, scoring a try in their 45-7 win over Kenya to secure Namibia’s third successive title. 

Commenting on his newest arrival Director of Rugby Clive Griffiths said. “Lesley comes highly recommended to us through Lyn Jones, his coach at Welwitschias, and also Phil Davies [Namibian Head Coach]. 

“In addition to that we have studied his game tape and really like what we see but it is great to have some very sharp judges give such a glowing recommendation.

“He is an exciting acquisition and should suit our style of play down to the ground, there are a couple of rough edges to be worked on but has plenty of potential and I’m really looking forward to seeing what he can do.

“His playing style has similarities to Andy Bulumakau, he a bit of x factor going forward and can pack a punch in defence so should suit the type of rugby we try to play.”

Having landed into the country yesterday and headed straight to Clifton Lane, Klim has had an eventful couple of days but states he is very excited about his latest challenge with Doncaster Knights. “Firstly I would like to say how grateful I am for this opportunity, I am very excited to sign for Doncaster Knights and looking forward to this season with my new teammates. 

“My ambition is to get as much game time for the Knights as possible and help the team be successful for the rest of the season.

“I didn’t know a great deal about the Club before arriving here but having researched the Knights I am very excited to be a part of it even if the weather is very cold!”

Check out some of Lesley’s highlights from 2017 below.

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Knights claim bragging rights in Christmas derby.

Rotherham titans 19-36 Doncaster Knights.

The Knights recorded a third successive win and made it home and away South Yorkshire derby triumphs against a committed Rotherham Titans at Clifton Lane. 

The Knights claimed all five points as they turned a 16-14 half time deficit into a 19-36 bonus point win with a fine second half display

The weather was kind, considering the time of year, and both sides looked lively taking advantage of the conditions to put width and pace into their early attacks.

The Knights were quicker out of the blocks and it looked as if they were going to score after just five minutes of play. Unfortunately, during a deep driving lineout possession was spilled when it seemed as if all that was left to do was ground the ball for a try.

Donny maintained the pressure despite the error and got over for the game’s opening score shortly after. 

Some smart running lines opened up a hole for Simon Humberstone to attack before offloading Curtis Wilson. The winger made his way deep into the home half before being brought down and from there the Knights executed well. A handful of phases preceded a well timed running line from Will Owen to score against his former side.

The Titans response was swift and impressive, applying pressure almost immediately following the restart. Speedy, organized defence forced a pressure kick out of scrum half Michael Heaney who found touch just outside the Donny 22m.

The Titans used the field position well and Jake Henry cut off his wing with a fine carry to put the Knights on the back foot. From there possession went wide quickly and Ben Foley, brother to Charlie, pulled off a nice bit of handling under pressure to release Drew Cheshire who crossed untouched.

The try really put the wind in the hosts sails and they enjoyed a fifteen-minute period of ascendancy.

Several good attacks made inroads into Donny territory although it has to be said the Knights hamstrung themselves with repeated penalty mistakes. Fly half Caolan Ryan motioned towards the posts seemingly with every penalty that went his sides way, not surprising as he slotted three first half penalties including one long range attempt from on the half way line.

Ryan’s success with the boot meant the Knights had fallen nine points behind and the home crowd became increasingly excitable. Donny needed a strong finish to the half and they delivered.

A penalty against the hosts well very well struck to touch by Humberstone before the Titans pack illegally dropped a driving Doncaster line out. Humberstone put his forwards in the corner and from their they produced the goods, a solid driving lineout rumbled over the line where Ben Hunter emerged from the bodies in possession.

Humberstone added the extras to make the score 16-14 and shortly after the half time whistle was blown.

The Knights looked bright immediately following the restart and had it not been for a couple of unsuccessful lineouts might have quickly had a further try. However, consecutive deep shots were disrupted and the Titans cleared their lines.

Points did come for the Knights as Humberstone hit his first of four successful second half penalties to briefly kick Donny ahead. Ryan cancelled it out moments later however, converting a penalty won by the home pack at the scrum, 19-27. 

A scrappy period of play followed the penalty exchange with both sides just not quite clicking and neither set piece really dominating.

This changed on fifty-five minutes however when Michael Heaney finished a nice attacking sequence from a deep line out and from then on the Knights began to pull away and looked the better side.

Titans pressure was nullified with aggressive, coherent defence and the Knights raids seemed to cause more and more problems as the clock ticked on.

Credit must go to the Titans defence which repelled goal line drives time and time again but all to often it meant they found themselves on the wrong side of the ref’s whistle. Three successful Humberstone penalties between minute 65 and 72 put the game beyond Rotherham, meaning that pride and bonus points was all that was left to play for in the dying stages.

As the eighty-minute mark crept closer and closer it didn’t seem as if the Knights would get the all-important fourth score but with one final rally they did just that.

Back to back penalties moved Donny into threatening field position and, following a well-secured line out, they set about the Titans line. Will Owen produced another trademark, battering run deep into the 22m before play was spun to the corner. Curtis Wilson took position and, with little room and defenders around him, showed extraordinary strength to battle over and score on the final whistle. 

Derby wins always mean a little bit more and after today the Knights go into another derby fixture but do so with the confidence of three wins in a row, hoping to end the year on a high.

Rotherham Titans; 15) Will Thomas, 14) Ben Foley, 13) Drew Cheshire (Paolo Odogwa 61’), 12) Joe Barker, 11) Jake Henry, 10) Caolan Ryan, 9) Rhodri Davies, 1) Toby Williams (Tom Williams 71’), 2) Jonny Murphy (Luke Cole 61’), 3) Sam Nixon (Brandon Palmer 68’), 4) Matt Postlethwaite (Tom Burns 72’), 5) Rob Louw, 6) Adam Peters, 7) Charlie Maddison, 8) Tom Calladine © (Tom Burns).

Replacements; 16) Luke Cole, 17) Tom Williams, 18) Brandon Palmer, 19) Dan Granger, 20) Tom Burns, 21) Lee Millar, 22) Paolo Odogwa.

Tries; Cheshire 17’

Con; Ryan 17’

Pens; Ryan 19’, 26, 31’ 51’ 

Knights XV; 15) Paul Jarvis, 14) Curtis Wilson, 13) Mat Clark (Charlie Foley 78’), 12) Will Owen, 11) Tyson Lewis, 10) Simon Humberstone, 9) Michael Heaney (Tom James 75’), 1) Richard List (Jack Bergmanas 53’), 2) Ben Hunter (David Nelson 60’), 3) Colin Quigley (Joe Sproston 68’), 4) Matt Challinor (Morgan Eames 60’, 5) Nick Civetta, 6) Jack Ram, 7) Michael Hills ©, 8) Alex Shaw (Adam Batt 78’) 

Replacements; 16) David Nelson, 17) Jack Bergmanas, 18) Joe Sproston, 19) Morgan Eames, 18) Adam Batt, 21) Tom James, 22) Charlie Foley.

Tries; Owen 10’, Hunter 34’, Heaney 55’, Wilson 80’

Con; Humberstone 10’, 34’,

Pens; Humberstone 48’, 65’, 69’, 72’

Referee: Tim Wigglesworth

Attendance: 1,007



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Academy side named for Notts challenge.

The Academy side to face Nottingham Academy this evening at Castle Park has been announced.

The Academy put their 100% winning record for 2017/18 on the line this evening in what is likely to be the side’s stiffest challenge of the season to date.

Currently top of their British University & College Sport league, the youngsters take on Nottingham for an exhibition fixture on the main pitch at Castle Park tonight; kick off 19:30.

The Nottingham side arrive having recorded some impressive wins this calendar year with Academy sides from Wasps and Gloucester having lost out to the Green and Whites as well as Ealing Trailfinders last month.

The Doncaster side includes three players that have made competitive first team appearances in James Wright, Alex Keeton and Sam Jones with a number more that have trained with the Knights this term.

Kick off this evening is at 19:30 with the concourse bar and food counter open. 

Entry to the fixture is completely free so if you are at a loose end this evening please come down and support our youngsters.

Academy XV: 15 James Wright, 14 Seva Bulumakau, 13 Will Smith, 12 Sam Brooke, 11 Josh Fowler, 10 Ryan Sorrell, 9 Sam Pocklington, 1 Alex Keeton, 2 Will Holling, 3 Stylianos Theoklitou-Panagiotou, 4 Dan Robinson, 5 Jarman Langton, 6 Sam Jones, 7 Ed Miles, 8 Zak Poole.

Replacements; 16 Andrew Wheelhouse , 17 William Booth, 18 Fraser Leiper, 19 Alex Fearn, 20 Calum Macleod, 21 Rowan Mason, 22 Sam Nunn, 23 Karim Hamdi , 24 Billy Walker



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Derby squad named for Christmas show down.

The Doncaster Knights squad to face Rotherham Titans in tomorrow afternoon’s south Yorkshire derby fixture at Clifton Lane has been named.

There are a total of five former Titans in the match day twenty-two as the Knights look make it three wins in a row in the final away fixture of the year.

Upfront Richard List, Ben Hunter and Colin Quigley return to the starting lineup having all enjoyed at least a partial rests in last weekend’s win at Pontypridd.

Nick Civetta returns on loan from Newcastle Falcons to partner Matt Challinor at lock with Morgan Eames included on the bench.

Jack Ram takes his place at blindside flanker with Michael Hills recovered from the illness that kept him out last weekend to skipper the side at openside.

Alex Shaw’s omnipresence in the Knights squad continues, the number eight has featured in every competitive game of the season to date.

Clive Griffiths and the coaching staff continue their half back rotation with Michael Heaney and Simon Humberstone awarded starting roles this weekend.

Tyson Lewis is the only other switch from last week’s backline with Mat Clark and Will Owen continuing in midfield. Paul Jarvis makes his first Championship start since the opening day of the season and Curtis Wilson will hope to continue his recent try scoring form against his former side.

There is plenty of youth and energy about the pack replacements with 26-year-old Joe Sproston the oldest of Knights forward substitutes. Tom James and Charlie Foley will look to make an impact from the bench also having both crossed the whitewash last weekend.

Kick off tomorrow is at 14:00 and, as always, live updates will be available on twitter.

Knights XV; 15) Paul Jarvis, 14) Curtis Wilson, 13) Mat Clark, 12) Will Owen, 11) Tyson Lewis, 10) Simon Humberstone, 9) Michael Heaney, 1) Richard List, 2) Ben Hunter, 3) Colin Quigley, 4) Matt Challinor, 5) Nick Civetta, 6) Jack Ram, 7) Michael Hills ©, 8) Alex Shaw.

Replacements; 16) David Nelson, 17) Jack Bergmanas, 18) Joe Sproston, 19) Morgan Eames, 18) Adam Batt, 21) Tom James, 22) Charlie Foley.

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DKTV | Kendo derby day discussion.

Forwards coach Glen Kenworthy reflects on a satisfactory cup win away against Cardiff at the weekend and looks ahead to Saturday’s derby clash with Rotherham Titans.

Kendo believes that successive cup win against the Blues side has given the Knights momentum ahead of returning to Championship action and was pleased with the return to action for several players including hooker David Nelson.

The Former Titan was very quick to dismiss any notion that Saturday’s clash at Clifton Lane would be anything other than huge test despite Rotherham’s winless opening half of the season and states that the Knights will need to perform to their best if they are to return home with a win. 

George Griffiths & Mary Barkway

DRFC are sad to announce the passing of two long term supporters and members of the Club have passed away. 

George Griffiths 

Former 1st XV captain George Griffith has passed away after a long illness. His funeral will take place at Felkirk Church, South Hiendley at noon on Friday, January 5th followed by a celebration of his life at the Sun Inn in the same village.  We offer our deepest sympathy to his family and friends.

Mary Barkway 

Mary Barkway, affectionally known to everyone as “the Dragon”, also passed away recently.  Mary and her late husband Baz were stalwarts of the Club’s social scene in the late 1960s, 1970s and early 1980s before Baz’s job took him down to Ringwood in Hampshire.

We offer our deepest sympathy to her family and friends. Mary’s funeral took place on Monday, December 18th.  Mary was awarded her Chain Gang Cravat in 1975 for all the work she had put in over many years as Chairwoman of the Ladies Committee and helping to organise some of the Club’s very successful social activities from that era.

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Knights bring smiles to unwell children at Christmas

Members of the Knights squad paid a visit to the Children’s Ward at Doncaster Royal Infirmary, bringing smiles to the faces of children who will be spending Christmas in hospital.  

Dougie Flockhart, Joe Sproston, Jason Hill, Morgan Eames, Ian Williams & Junior Bulumakau visited the ward on Monday to spread some Christmas spirit, handing out rugby balls and calendars to youngsters as well as taking time out to speak with family and members of staff.

Claire Riley, Teacher at the Hospital School, said: “I’d like to say a huge thank you to Doncaster Knights for their generosity and taking time out of their day to visit our Children’s Ward. It’s a special time of year, so when children are sick in hospital, they miss out on the parties and other festivities. 

“It was so nice to see the faces on the children light up, after receiving gifts from their local sporting heroes – on behalf of the Trust, I can’t thank them enough.” 

Following the visit Dougie Flockhart said: “We were delighted to have the chance to go along and visit the Children’s Ward at DRI, it was so humbling and inspiring to meet the children and their families as well as the staff who do a truly incredible job.

“I’d like to say a huge thank you to Claire and the team for the fantastic work they do, for showing us around on the day and making the visit possible.”

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Academy vs Nottingham | Dec 22nd, KO 19:30.

This Friday night [December 22nd], The Academy, in association with Doncaster College, take on Nottingham Rugby Academy in what will be the youngsters toughest task of the season to date.

So far this term the Academy have recorded a 100% winning start to their British University and College Sports [BUCS] season but will be tested on a whole new level against their Nottingham counterparts under the Castle Park lights [main pitch]. Academy stars have also made their way into the Knights first team with Sam Jones regularly featuring this season and James Wright having made two competitive appearances and scoring versus Cornish Pirates.

The young Nottingham side has picked up some pretty impressive scalps this year including victories over Wasps and Gloucester Academy sides as well as Ealing Trailfinders Academy last month.

Kick off on Friday is 7:30pm, entry is absolutely free and the concourse bar and food counter will be open so get down and support the young guns as they look to end the year on a high!

Friday is the first of back-to-back Friday night lights fixtures at Castle Park as the Knights take on Yorkshire Carnegie on December 29th, kick off 19:45 & tickets on sale here.  


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DKTV | David Nelson return to action.

David Nelson made his competitive return versus Cardiff at the weekend following a lay off with a broken hand.

The hooker has been sidelined since October’s defeat to Hartpury but was thrown straight back in the deep end at the weekend, playing the full 80 minutes in the Knights Cup win over the Blues Premiership Select XV. 

Now back fit and on his 23rd birthday, David expressed the late present he really wants is a win over Rotherham at Clifton Lane on Saturday.