On Saturday the Knights won their first ever game on the Island of Jersey fighting back from a half time deficit to win by 23 points to 17. The victory meant the Knights perfect start to the season continued and sees them third in the league at this very early stage.
One man who played an influential role in both the victories over Plymouth Albion and Jersey is summer signing Alex Shaw. The back row man who arrived at Castle Park from Meadow Lane in June was part of a forward pack that enjoyed a solid afternoon in the Channel Island sun last Saturday and is very pleased with the start his new team has made, particularly achieving a win on Jersey soil.
“This is a tough division and there are no easy games but, as the season goes, the first two games have been favourable to us. We’ve worked very hard and got two hard earned and well-deserved wins.
“I’ve been away to Jersey a fair few times and never won there before. To go there, playing in decent weather for a change, and win is a big result as it is a very difficult place to go.
“To have picked up eight points from two games is exactly the start we were hoping for.”
On Saturday the Knights met a Jersey side that were very quick out of the traps and had to weather an early storm before fighting back and recording their first away win of the season. Despite the early pressure, Shaw states that the side were never in any doubt that they could get the win.
“They started well, they have a pitch that they like to play on and are used to as well as a strong wind behind them in the first half, which they used very well.
“We were able to keep the game within two points at half time and we all felt pretty confident coming out for the second half that if we changed a couple of things we would be able to finish with a positive result.
“Our scrum was very dominant, that pretty much controlled the game for us, particularly in the second period.
“It seemed that whenever we wanted to scrum for a penalty we could and when we wanted to execute a backs move we could, that was a massive weapon for us and a huge key to victory.
“If you have a good scrum it stands you in good stead for a lot of games especially in this division and if we’ve got Dougie [Flockhart] kicking like he did at the weekend its going to be a massive weapon for us to utilize for the rest of the year."
As good as the Knights start to the new Championship has been, Shaw knows that this Saturday they will face their biggest challenge to date when Dean Ryan’s Worcester Warriors arrive at Castle Park. Despite being widely touted as favourites for promotion the 27-year-old former Notts man states that the whole team are relishing the prospect and will be out for an upset.
“Worcester are arguably biggest team in the league.
“They’ve come down from the Premiership and have a lot of experience in their squad but everything we’ve done in our first two games and pre-season has been very positive.
“We take each game on it’s own merit, we’ve got a very difficult opposition on Saturday but we’re playing at home, which we enjoy doing, and we’ve won two on the bounce.
“If we continue the good things we’ve done so far and just work on a couple of other bits it should be enjoyable and very competitive game.”
Image courtesy of Sue Trower