Doncaster Knights: Griffiths backs players to dig in for big game

Chris Planchant will be back in Knights colours for this weekend's key clash with Esher.

Chris Planchant will be back in Knights colours for this weekend's key clash with Esher.

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Cometh the hour, cometh the men – that was the prediction of Clive Griffiths as the injury decimated Knights head into the top of the table clash with Esher.

Colin Phillips, Ben Hunter and Louis Spencer were the latest names added to the Knights injury list, taking the number of players missing to 12.

But Griffiths has backed his fit players to dig deep for the battle with Esher, who replaced the Knights at the top of the table last weekend.

“This is a winner-takes-all game and we are going to be ready for it regardless of the injury situation,” Griffiths told the Free Press.

“Cometh the hour, cometh the men.

“There’s disappointment about the defeat at Blaydon last weekend and a determination to put it right.

“We need to stay in touch with the top of the table ready for when the injured players start coming back.

“Most of them will start coming back from the start of January but we’ve got five games before then so we can’t afford to hang about.

“There’s a great deal of determination here and I think you’ll see that against Esher.

“This is a massive game. They were always going to be our main rivals because they’re a Championship club in all but name.

“We bounced back superbly after our first defeat and we’re going to have to be even better this time around.”

Griffiths will once again look to the loan market to boost his squad ahead of Saturday’s key game.

But he had an early boost yesterday when Chris Planchant answered the Knights’ distress call and agreed a return to the club.

The number eight retired from full time rugby at the end of last season, moving to Doncaster Phoenix in order to concentrate on his teaching career.

Griffiths: “I’m pleased to have the big lad from Swansea back with us.

“He had no hesitation in coming back to help us and we’re grateful for that.

“We’re really struggling right now, particularly with the forwards, so it’s great to have Chris back.”