Re-signing | Captains commit to Knights future.

Doncaster Knights can today announce the first re-contracting of the current playing group as Captains Matt Challinor and Michael Hills agree contract extensions at the Club.

With over 300 competitive appearances between them, the Knights’ on field and club Captains have both agreed new deals with Challinor signing for at least a further season and Hills extending until the close of 2019/20.

Chall signed for Knights from local rivals Rotherham Titans in 2010 meaning next season with be his ninth at Castle Park. The lock became a double centurion in November upon making his 200th appearance as a Knight versus Bedford Blues.

The 33-year-old has been central to the Club’s success since arriving in DN2 and is now synonymous with the Knights number four jersey and his contributions have not waned this campaign. The second row has missed just two games so far this term and tipped in with five tries, including in each of the Knights last two games.

Doncaster native Michael Hills returned to Castle Park as part of the Knights National One winning 2013/14 side. Having enjoyed spells in the Premiership with Sale Sharks and London Welsh the open side looks set to end his playing days where it all started after committing to another two seasons with the Knights.

As Captain, Hills has overseen the Knights most successful period in history with successive play-off campaigns and a second place Championship finish in 2015/16. The 32-year-old reached the 100 game milestone for the Club versus Leinster A late last year and has started all but one of the Knights Championship games this term.

Watch Matt and Michael discuss their decisions to stay at Castle Park on DKTV.

 

 

South Yorkshire Old Blacks v RAF Vets – Castle Park tonight!

Castle Park’s vintage playing arm, the Doncaster Dragons are teaming up with a collection of other local vets teams for a rugby collaboration akin to the Baa Baas. 

The ‘South Yorkshire Old Blacks’ pool their collective wisdoms and talents for a fixture with an RAF Vets side at Castle Park this evening. 

The game kicks off at 7:30pm on pitch three and the Lansdowne Bar will be open in the Clubhouse. 

Entry & parking is completely free and we welcome all to come down and watch these aged athletes do battle under the Castle Park floodlights. 

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PHOENIX | Posa – plenty of positives from Bournville win.

Doncaster Phoenix Head Coach Ants Posa reflects on his side 52-26 victory over Bournville at Castle Park at the weekend.

The DRFC Rugby Development Manager stated that he his pleased with how his young side are performing at the moment giving praise to in particular to number 8 Marty Brink who has been called up into Knights training this week.

The win leaves Phoenix fourth in the Midlands Premier with games in hand and not out of reach of the promotion play-off place. Despite this Ants is focusing solely on this week’s opposition, Bridgenorth, aiming to avenge October’s narrow home defeat. 

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Kendo pleased with Nottingham performance.

Forwards Coach Glen Kenworthy will have found it hard to find fault with his side’s performance at the weekend as the Knights recorded a bonus point victory over Nottingham, keeping a clean sheet in the process.

The Knights pack delivered a dominant showing with the forwards contributing all four tries in the 27-6 victory at Lady Bay. 

Reflecting on the result Kendo said that it was pleasing to the side execute their game plan effectively and take the chances that it created.

The Donny double centurion also looks ahead to the Knights next Championship fixture versus London Scottish on February 10th, tickets on sale now. 

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Academy | Promotion in reach.

The Academy, in association with Doncaster College, are potentially just one game away from promotion in the British University and College Sports (BUCS) pyramid. 

Having recorded a perfect seven bonus point wins from seven so for in 2017/18, the side know that another five points would give them an unassailable lead at the top of the table.

The team are also on course to defend their Northern Conference Plate title with a quarter final date away at Liverpool Hope 1st XV in a fortnight’s time.

Ahead of tomorrow’s clash versus Leeds University 4th XV hooker Will Holling discusses the mood in the camp and what he expects from tomorrow’s game [KO 13:45 @ the Brownlee Centre – Leeds].

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England vs Ireland Six Nations tickets.

The Club has been re-allocated additional tickets for England’s RBS Six Nations clash with Ireland on March 17th. 

Members are able to apply for the tickets by filling out the form from the link below.

Doncaster RFC fulfilled it’s initial allocation of tickets and this extra allocation is for a limited number of Category Two tickets only. 

If you wish to apply for tickets please fill out the form and follow the instructions detailed before 5pm Monday February 5th. 

England vs Ireland Ticket allocation form.

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Job vacancy | Performance Analyst.

Position: Head of Performance Analysis

Hours: Full Time 

Term: May 2018

Salary: Competitive (To be discussed at Interview)

Location: Castle Park Stadium, Doncaster and other locations within the United Kingdom as required.

Job description:

To Lead the Performance Analysis support to the Doncaster Knights Professional staff/squad in the Greene King IPA Championship and British and Irish Cup by:

  • Providing pre-game analysis on each weeks opposition, coding previous games for player and coach perusal. Then in conjunction with coaching staff, producing opposition previews/statistics for feedback in team meetings.
  • Live Coding and providing feedback during all 1st team fixtures, providing a coded timeline with multiple video angles to coaching staff.
  • Post-Game analysis of individual and specific areas of team play in line with KPI’s as defined by the Coaching Staff.
  • Post-Game review analysis to be completed in conjunction with coaching staff for team feedback.
  • Filming and coding of all team and units training sessions.
  • Arranging provision and operating GPS equipment providing statistical feedback to support S&C and Medical Staff.
  • Supplying video evidence of injury incidents to medical staff.
  • Recruiting and training undergraduate/post-graduate interns from local universities.
  • Maintaining and updating a database of all statistics and video in the Performance Analysis suite at Castle Park.
  • Operating and administering an online file-sharing platform for player and coach use.
  • Continually developing own practice through study of the latest research and CPD opportunities.
  • Any other duties as agreed with the DOR.

 

Person Specification:

Essential:

  • Experience working within a professional sport environment (Preferably Rugby Union/League).
  • Successfully completed an Undergraduate Sport Science/Performance Analysis related degree.
  • Undertaken training in the field of performance analysis either within a degree programme, or external course.
  • Thorough working knowledge and experience in using various analysis software.
  • Strong understanding of Microsoft Office, Apple iWork and IBM SPSS software.
  • Strong understanding of Video file formats and conversion tools.
  • Strong Understanding of Rugby Union

Desirable:

  • Successfully completed an MSc in Performance Analysis/Sport Coaching/Science related subject.
  • Completed RFU coaching/refereeing certificates and CPD.
  • Previous experience as lead performance analyst with a professional sports team. (Preferably Rugby Union/League)

To apply, please send a CV and Cover Letter Nathan_s34@hotmail.co.uk the closing date for applications is February 28th, applicants will only be contacted if successful in gaining an interview.

 

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Clinical Knights claim all five points.

Nottingham 6-27 Knights

The Knights passed their first Championship examination of 2018 with flying colours as they produced a brilliantly disciplined display to cruise past Nottingham Rugby at their Lady Bay home.

Donny picked up where they left off a week ago in Dublin with a complete eighty minutes of rugby and, in all honesty, looked a cut above the Green and Whites in all departments. The Knights pack controlled proceedings for the vast majority of the game with all four tries the result of superb set piece play.

It took just three minutes for the Knights to register their first try of the game after Simon Humberstone pinged a smart grubber kick behind the Nottingham line which bounced to touch in the home 22m. Loose lineout ball was seized by Jack Ram who showed good strength to wrestle himself just short of the try line and from there play was switched blind with Michael Heaney hitting Colin Quigley with a miss pass who finished with aplomb.

Ten minutes later the Knights were in again, the lineout once again providing the platform. Following a solid drive the Knights carried infield with Michael hills and Josh Tyrell generating some go forward. Eventually space was found down the left hand side where Matt Challinor took possession and battered over for his second try in two games.

Humberstone negotiated the wind and add the extras which saw the Knights 0-12 up with less that quarter of an hour played. 

Nottingham found their feet in the game’s second quarter and began to ask questions out wide. Bristol bound fly-half Tiff Eden showed some nice touches and slotted a couple of cross field kicks that were very nearly collected by winger David Williams.

The hosts got off the mark just before the 20-minute point, after the Knights pack gave away a post lineout penalty and Eden slotted the three pointer. The remainder of the first half was relatively well-matched with the Knights keeping their line in tact with some impressive defensive plays from the likes of Tyrell and Hills.

A penalty just outside the home 22m set up field position for the Knights third try after Humberstone put his forwards in the corner.

An exquisite catch and drive saw the Nottingham pack completely disintegrate and, with Donny racing towards the try line, flanker Jordan Coughlan cynically dropped the drive which saw him yellow-carded and a penalty try awarded.

In the late stages of the half Nottingham looked to turn the screw but were met by an organized defensive which held out till half time meaning the sides went into the change of ends with Donny up 3-19.

Nottingham have recorded some impressive victories at their Lady Bay home this season, including a November victory over Ealing Trailfinders, so it was unsurprising to see them race out of the traps in the second half. An early scrum penalty allowed Eden to reduce the deficit to 16 points but from that point onwards the Knights contained the home efforts.

In heavy conditions it was never going to be a game of quick, flowing rugby and the Knights uncompromising forward play was too much for the home side cope with.

Humberstone cancelled out Eden’s earlier effort with a nice penalty after Mat Clark powered his way into the home half and the Green and Whites were penalized for not rolling away.

The bonus point was secured on 74 minutes and again the Donny set piece can claim all the applause. 

A scrum penalty was struck to touch by Declan Cusack and from the corner the forwards gathered and drove through for Ben hunter to tumble over and secure the win.

Nottingham looked to salvage something from the game in the dying stages but the Knights defence remained resolute to complete an impressive afternoon.

The side now look forward to a weekend off before back-to-back home games, no doubt full of confidence following a superb start to the year!

Nottingham XV; 15) Sean Scanlon, 14) Billy Robinson, 13) Will Millett, 12) Gearoid Lyons, 11) David Williams (Vili Hakalo 62’), 10) Tiff Eden, 9) Murray McConnell (Darryl Veenendaal 69’), 1) James Penman (Aniseko Sio 62), 2) Jimmy Stevens (Ben Brownlie 69’) , 3) Rory Burke (Ben Hooper 69’), 4) Alex Moon, 5) Danny Qualter, 6) Ben Morris (C), 7) Jordan Coghlan (Matt Everard 69’), 8) Shane Buckley (Josh Poullet 62’)

Replacements: 16) Ben Brownlie, 17) Aniseko Sio, 18) Ben Hooper, 19) Josh Poullet, 20) Matt Everard, 21) Darryl Veenendaal, 22) Vili Hakalo

Tries;

Conv;

Pens; Eden 18’, 47’ 

Knights XV: 15) Paul Jarvis, 14) Curtis Wilson, 13) Andy Bulumakau, 12) Mat Clark, 11) Tyson Lewis, 10) Simon Humberstone (Declan Cusack 72’), 9) Michael Heaney (Tom James 72’), 1) Richard List (Jack Bergmanas 70’), 2) Ben Hunter, 3) Colin Quigley (Joe Sproston 66’), 4) Matt Challinor (Morgan Eames 73’), 5) Tom Hicks, 6) Jack Ram (Alex Shaw 64’), 7) Michael Hills ©, 8) Josh Tyrell. 

Replacements; 16) David Nelson, 17) Jack Bergmanas, 18) Joe Sproston, 19) Morgan Eames, 20) Alex Shaw, 21) Tom James, 22) Declan Cusack.

Tries; Quigley 3’, Challinor 12’, Penalty 31’, Hunter 74’

Conv; Humberstone 12’

Pens; Humberstone 70’

Referee: Dean Richards

Attendance: 1,095

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Griff agrees two-year extension.

Doncaster Knights are delighted to announce that Clive Griffiths has agreed a two-year contract renewal that will see the Welshman continue as Director of Rugby at Castle Park until 2020.

The extension means that Clive’s tenure at Castle Park will continue until at least the close of the 2019/20 campaign and comes as the Knights head into a trio of pivotally important, successive Championship clashes.

Speaking to DKTV upon the announcement Griff stated that it was an easy decision to recommit his future to the Club and that he is excited for his future at Castle Park.

Explaining his vision for the next two years, Clive expressed that the Knights will continue to strive to perform at the very top of the Championship whilst playing a brand of rugby that is both entertaining and effective.

He went on to highlight how over his next term in office there will be a renewed focus on solidifying the rugby pathway at Castle Park with all playing sections of the club aiming to strengthen their mutual connection. Clive also references a holistic approach to rugby management at the Club moving forward, highlighting the importance of the Mini/Junior, Phoenix, Academy and Ladies sections to the long term future of rugby at Castle Park.

Knights named for Notts clash.  

The Knights return to Championship action on Sunday and name a strong side to face Nottingham at Lady Bay.

In what will be a battle between fifth and sixth in the league standings Griff and the coaching team make a handful of changes to the side the inflicted a first competition defeat on Leinster A in Dublin last weekend.

Fresh from scoring an 80 metre, try of the season contender Paul Jarvis retain his place at full back with Curtis Wilson recalled to the starting XV having missed the trip to Donnybrook. Tyson Lewis continues on the left hand side with the rest of the backline also unchanged from last Saturday.

Upfront there is a return for Colin Quigley who has recovered from a neck injury to partner Richard List and Ben Hunter in the front row and Matt Challinor and Tom Hicks continue to be the picks at lock.

The back-row has been shuffled somewhat with skipper Michael Hills and Jack Ram both recalled to the starting line up. There are joined by Josh Tyrell who will make his first Championship start following an impressive debut in Ireland.

On the bench there is a youthful trio of front row cover in the form of David Nelson, Jack Bergmanas and Joe Sproston. Morgan Eames and Alex Shaw complete the forward replacements with Tom James and Declan Cusack completing the match day squad.

Kick off on Sunday is at 15:00 & updates will be available on twitter.

Starting XV: 15) Paul Jarvis, 14) Curtis Wilson, 13) Lesley Klim, 12) Mat Clark, 11) Tyson Lewis, 10) Simon Humberstone, 9) Michael Heaney, 1) Richard List, 2) Ben Hunter, 3) Colin Quigley, 4) Matt Challinor, 5) Tom Hicks, 6) Jack Ram, 7) Michael Hills ©, 8) Josh Tyrell. 

Replacements; 16) David Nelson, 17) Jack Bergmanas, 18) Joe Sproston, 19) Morgan Eames, 20) Alex Shaw, 21) Tom James, 22) Declan Cusack.

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