Friday Knights out to prove a point

DOUBTFUL: Lock Matt Challinor looks set to miss the Knights' promotion play off opener against Bristol through injury.
DOUBTFUL: Lock Matt Challinor looks set to miss the Knights' promotion play off opener against Bristol through injury.

BRETT Davey says the Knights have a few wrongs to put right in the promotion play-off campaign – starting tomorrow night against Bristol.

And the director of rugby is confident his side can upset the form book when the table toppers visit Castle Park.

He said: “Bristol have had a fantastic season and are a very good side but we’ll give it a real good go on Friday night.

“You’ve got to have confidence when you’re the home side and I’m sure there will be a fantastic atmosphere.

“We’ll go out there and play our game and see where it takes us.

“There were a lot of positives for us down at their place the other week and we’ll be looking to replicate that.”

The Knights lost all six league games against the sides they find themselves up against in the play-off pool.

And Davey expects his players to be determined to change their poor record.

He said: “The lads will want to put a few things right over these next few weeks and end the season on the right note.

“You can’t escape the fact we haven’t won a game against these three sides all season.

“If we’d have been in the other group instead of Rotherham we’d have won three, drawn two and lost one, but that’s the way it goes.

“But we were closer in most of the games against Bristol, Welsh and Nottingham than the scorelines might have suggested.

“It was the worst performance of the season at Nottingham but we were right in it until injury time in the other game.

“There is a sense of having a point to prove.

“We switched off a little bit at the wrong times at this point last season and we ended up just missing out on the semi finals.

“This is like a fresh start because we’ve got the most important thing out of the way in finishing in the top eight.

“We’ll just take one game at a time and see how it goes.”

The play-off pools are stilted to match performances in the league stage meaning Bristol begin on three points, London Welsh two, Nottingham one and the Knights zero.

Davey said: “I’m in full agreement with this because the league must mean something.

“It rewards consistency and unfortunately for us we didn’t have enough of that.

“At one point we were chasing the top four but things caught up with us like injuries, the weather and the small squad.

“It means we’ve got to work extra hard but the incentive is there.”

Preparations for the play-offs have been relaxed for the Knights with team building trips last week to ease tired bodies.

Matt Challinor, Adam Kettle and Chris Planchant are all doubtful for the visit of Bristol while Tom Luke, David McIlwaine and Dan Smith remain long term absentees.