Hartpury RFC 12/10/2019

8Hartpury RFC

20Doncaster Knights

2:30 pm · October 12, 2019


Doncaster produced a battling and clinical display in a tough afternoon at the ALPAS Arena to win the first Championship game of the season, 8-20.

The opening league fixture was a scrappy affair for the Knights and after conceding the first try to Hartpury, it looked like a gloomy day ahead. However, a Ben Hunter try, two penalties from Sam Olver and a late score from Pete Lucock swayed the balance of the game in the visitors’ favour as they left with four points for their efforts.

Hartpury started the game looking to even the score after their defeat in the cup at Castle Park last month and played most of their rugby in the Donny half.

An early warning call came in the 16th minute with the ball being held up by the Knights, only for moments later Matt Challinor received a yellow card for an early tackle reducing the side to 14 men.

That pressure continued and the first try of the game deservedly went to the home side, after three line outs and several pick and goes in the visitors’ 22, it was London Irish loanee, Chunya Munga that dotted down. Josh Bragman missed the conversion for the Gloucestershire based side.

Clive Griffiths’ side looked for a reply and eventually got one with their only try of the half on the 33rd minute mark. A good line out allowed the driving maul to gain momentum with Ben Hunter, against his former side, scoring for the visitors.

The Knights ended the half in a positive fashion, but couldn’t edge any further into the 22 to cause the home side further problems.

It was Hartpury that put the first points on the board after the interval, through a Bragman penalty in the 44th minute.

However, the Knights replied with a penalty of their own on the 55th minute mark as Olver dispatched the kick from 35 metres out.

Hartpury continued to be camped in the Donny side of the pitch for much of the half, but were unable to find a breakthrough against a firm defensive display from the Knights.

Doncaster have been a clinical outfit this season and continued in that fashion with a try in the late stages of the game from Pete Lucock. After a good period of pressure and a combination of line outs and scrums deep in the Hartpury 22, on his debut, the centre barged over for his second try of the season.

Olver converted to round off a good kicking performance from himself and earn the Knights a 8-20 victory in the first Championship game of the season.

Match Statistics

Hartpury XV: 15. Simpson 14. Goatley 13. Reeves 12. Margetts 11. Henry 10. Bragman 9. Carter 1. Murphy 2. Tanner 3. Gibson 4. Munga 5. Cleggg 6. Qera 7. Safe 8. Taylor-Nagle

Replacements: 16. Crane 17. Merrey 18. Challenger 19. Everard 20. Preece 21. Fossester 22. Wilcox 23. Cochrane

Tries: Munga

Conversions: Bragman

Penalties: Bragman

Knights XV: 15. McPhillips 14. Evans 13. Hayes 12. Lucock 11. Wilson 10. Olver 9. James(80’Pocklington) 1. Hislop(55’Thomas) 2. Hunter 3. Quigley(51’Foster) 4. Challinor 5. Smith 6. Edgson(50’Eames) 7. Hills 8. Pitman(37’ Sproston)

Replacements: 16. Holling 17. Foster 18. Thomas 19. Eames 20. Sproston 21. Pocklington 22. Lewis 23. Foley

Tries: Hunter, Lucock

Conversions: Olver 2

Penalties: Olver 2

Yellow card: Challinor

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