Simply the best - says Dons coach

Dons v London Skolars. Dons player Chris Spurr pushes through a tackle to score a try in the first half. Picture: Holly Allen.
Dons v London Skolars. Dons player Chris Spurr pushes through a tackle to score a try in the first half. Picture: Holly Allen.
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TONY Miller says his current Dons side is the best he has managed during his time at the club but he has told his players: “you’ve achieved nothing yet”.

Doncaster went fourth in Co-operative Championship One when they notched a fifth successive league win at Rochdale Hornets.

They face basement side Gateshead Thunder at the Keepmoat Stadium on Sunday (3pm) with Miller’s praises ringing in their ears.

But Miller says there is still plenty of work to be done to make this season a success.

Doncaster face Gateshead this weekend before a trio of tough away matches at league leaders Swinton, South Wales and Keighley.

Miller said: “These next couple of months will be defining for us and there are some big games to look forward to.

“We targeted a top four finish before a ball was kicked and we’ll sit down over the next couple of weeks and draw up some more specific targets.

“I’ve been assistant boss at Doncaster when we’ve had a very good team, but this is probably the best side I’ve been in charge of.

“There’s a great spirit among the lads and as a club we’re definitely heading in the right direction.

“But these next few games are crucial - starting with the visit of Gateshead.

“They made it tough for us at their place just the other week and we’ll approach the game like we would do any other.

“We need to be a lot smarter when we play them on Sunday.”

Chris Spurr’s second hat trick in the space of a month helped the Dons recover from a slow start to win 26-16 at Rochdale on Sunday.

Centre Spurr scored twice before the break in a nip and tuck first half which saw Doncaster take an 18-16 lead into the interval.

He then completed his second treble of the season - following up his hat trick against Oldham just four weeks ago - with a last minute score to wrap up another win for Miller’s in form side at Spotland.

The victory was the Dons’ fifth straight success and keeps them just one point behind second placed Keighley.

Spurr’s two first half scores were converted by Scott Spaven, who then kicked his third and final conversion when Carl Hughes’ 33rd minute try gave Doncaster something of a cushion.

Rochdale had seized the early initiative with tries from John Cookson and Dale Bloomfield before Spurr and Hughes turned the tables on the hosts.

Craig Ashall went over for the hosts in the dying moments of the first half to reduce the deficit to two points.

But the Dons were in defiant mood after the interval, preventing Rochdale from adding to their score and making sure of victory with late tries from Nev Morrison and man of the moment Spurr.

Miller said: “We started the game poorly and dropped the ball on our first three sets.

“We were 10-0 down after ten minutes but we recovered well and to stop a team like Rochdale scoring in the second half is a fantastic achievement.

“Every game is a big game for us now,” he added.

“We’ve just got to keep on approaching games in the right manner and win as many as possible.”

This weekend’s opponents Gateshead are yet to win this season.

When Doncaster travelled to the North East last month they edged to a nervous 22-6 win.

Craig Fawcett (knee) and Dean Colton (groin) are doubtful for Sunday but Stu Sanderson looks set to return after a leg injury.