Doncaster Knights braced for visit of familiar foes Jersey

There has probably been less pre-match briefing at both clubs than usual this week ahead of Doncaster Knights’ visit of Jersey this weekend.

Wednesday, 12th February 2020, 7:02 pm
Tom Calladine

The Championship clash on Saturday (2.30pm) at Castle Park will be the fourth time this season that the two clubs have met.

The Channel Islanders certainly have the upper hand so far, having had the edge in the previous three encounters this season.

“We beat them at home early doors in the Championship Cup pool game but lost twice over there in both the return and in the league,” said Knights’ back-rower Tom Calladine, one of four men to have captained the Knights so far during the 2019/20 campaign.

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“They (Jersey) are having a decent season and it’s going to be a tough game.

“But we’ll be going into it having won our last two at home at Castle Park and full of confidence here.

“Obviously, we’d take any win going into the game but hopefully it’s not as close as the last two home games have been.

“Their style of rugby has changed a lot in the last couple of years.

“They tend to throw the ball around a lot more these days.

"There is a lot more variety to their play whereas before they were always known for their strong pack and they used to bully teams up front.”

Director of rugby Clive Griffiths has recently called for Knights to be more clinical in their remaining games this term.

And that is something that Calladine, who missed last week's defeat at Cornish Pirates and was an injury doubt earlier in the week, totally agrees with.

He added: “We train well during the week but often come game day we are creating the chances but just not taking them.

“You can sometimes hear the frustration in the crowd.

"You don’t get many chances in this league so you have to take the majority of them.

“Teams like Pirates and Jersey have been taking theirs and that’s why they are both up there.

“We want to be challenging for the top four.

“But as players we don’t feel we are where we should be.

“Because of where we’ve been in the league, teams are coming here expecting to beat us instead of fearing playing at Castle Park as in the past.

“We’ve got to get back to that situation.”