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Academy group join Knights pre-season.

The Doncaster Knights player pathway continues to shine as a group of nine Academy students have joined the early stages of first team pre-season.

The pandemic meant the youngsters missed a full season of action but the group are raring to start a new adventure in the British Universities & Colleges (BUCS) Northern Premier 2 division; the third tier of the BUCS Pyramid.

Selected by Head of Academy Tyson Lewis; Joe Barnes, Adam Hopkinson, Calvin Mitchell, Jack Townend, Joe Barnes, Sam Wager, Tom Parkin, Tom O’Brien, Will Metcalfe have all linked up with the senior squad for the first block of pre-season and Tyson believes they will all be better for the experience.

“We’ve offered a number of boys the chance to do pre-season based on their previous displays and our knowledge of them. Two of the boys we have watched in the recent Yorkshire Under 18s competition & they stood out and the rest we know from last season.

“We are not expecting them to be at the same level of the Knights yet but it is an opportunity for them to see where they are in terms of fitness, in terms of skills and to absorb the information that’s given to them.

“They have been in for a few weeks now so they definitely know what is expected of them and whilst there is an understanding they are Academy players we are not letting them get away with missing standards, all of which should stand them in good stead for when the Academy season starts.”

The Academy’s incredible rise through the league structure continued last year as they recorded a third promotion in four seasons, following a level transfer in 2019.

The transfer saw the Academy elevated two levels up the league pyramid, meaning they have ascended five leagues since joining BUCS in 2016.  “The new season is another step up, we are now two promotions away from BUCS Super Rugby league which is the ultimate goal but there are some very high quality sides in our league this year.

“The likes of Manchester Met & Loughborough will be extremely strong but we are aiming to be in the mix and be competitive despite it being our first year at this level.”

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