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Griff report: Sedgley reflection

The Knights made it two pre-season wins from two as they overcame Sedgley Park 58-7 at Castle Park last weekend.

The visitors battled admirably throughout the eighty minutes but the Knights defence held firm with an offensive error the cause of the Lancastrian’s sole try. Commenting earlier today the Knights DoR spoke positively about his team’s performance but admits there is still work to do.


“For the most part our defence was solid, we’ve picked up on a few things that we need to sharpen up on with our defensive line but it’s easily fixable.


“The only blot on the copybook was the own goal we scored. We showed intent to play but unfortunately on that occasion it cost us and the ball dropped to one of the quickest guys on the field in James Harrison and there was no catching him.


“We need to make sure we’re really making life hard for our opposition when they have the ball, not give away any gifts like that and make teams earn the right to cross our line.”


“Some of our decision making with ball in hand needs to improve. I think if you look at the way we’ve sometimes tried to play in pre-season especially when receiving kick offs or running the ball from deep in our own territory there is evidence of that.


“Against stronger opponents we’ll need to be sharper on our decision making as we’ll be up against sharper defenses.”


Griff anticipates a tougher battle this Saturday as the Knights get reacquainted with Blaydon RFC. The Newcastle-based side will be the highest ranked opponents to visit Castle Park this pre-season and a stern examination is expected.


“Blaydon will no doubt bring their usual robust, no nonsense style of play here this Saturday.


“They’ll have a strong scrum coached by Micky Ward who has a great reputation, particularly in that aspect of the game.


“We had two titanic tussles with them in National One and I think they’ll be an ideal opposition ahead of our game with London Welsh on September 5th.”


Clive will continue to look at a number of positional options this Saturday but has been boosted by news that a number of the Knights squad should be fit for selection.


“We will try more combinations at the weekend, the team that starts on Saturday won’t necessarily be the side that starts against Welsh. We’ve aimed to give everyone as much game time as possible in the two games so far and I think we’ve been successful in that.


“We’ve seen a lot of the new players; unfortunately Joe [Sproston] has had to play at number eight for most of the time due to circumstance but we got to see him prop towards the end of the game versus Sedgley and he looked decent.


“Alex Shaw and Matt Challinor should feature at some point this Saturday as well as Colin Quigley and it will be interesting to see how they go.


“Paul Jarvis has an adductor strain so he’s doubtful and we are waiting to hear on Jim Wigglesworth but we will know for sure when the team is confirmed on Thursday.


Kick off versus Blaydon this Saturday is at 14:30 and adult tickets start from just £5. #COYK

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