Doncaster Knights target fifth straight win in Ampthill clash

Doncaster Knights hope to maintain their perfect record at Castle Park when they host Ampthill on Saturday (2.30pm)

By Jamie Crawford
Friday, 28th January 2022, 12:45 pm
Doncaster Knights have won six out of six at Castle Park this season. Picture: Andrew Roe/AHPIX LTD
Doncaster Knights have won six out of six at Castle Park this season. Picture: Andrew Roe/AHPIX LTD

Knights, who have won six out of six on home soil this season, come into this weekend’s game on the back of four straight victories.

They did not play last weekend and dropped to second in the Championship table as a result of Ealing Trailfinders’ win over Coventry.

But Steve Boden’s men can keep the leaders within their sights by notching up another win against seventh-placed Ampthill.

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About the opposition

Bedfordshire-based Ampthill RUFC play their games at Dillingham Park and rose to the Championship in 2019.

They finished a creditable fifth in their first season in the second tier. Last season’s shortened competition saw them finish seventh.

Head-to-head

These teams have only met three times since Ampthill were promoted due to Covid disruption.

They have all been close games with the biggest winning margin being just four points when the Knights lost 30-26 on the travels two years ago.

Knights prevailed 19-17 at Ampthill last season and it was another two-point game last October in the reverse fixture when Boden’s men edged a 20-18 victory.

Last time out

Knights and Ampthill both faced Jersey Reds in their last game with differing outcomes.

Knights recorded a superb 35-19 win at St Peter on January 15.

Last weekend Ampthill went down 17-12 at home to the Reds. Utility back Ben Cambriani and back row Joe Bercis were their try scorers.

Dangermen

Cambriani is the equal-eighth highest try-scorer in the Championship with seven scores to his name, while hooker Jack Michael Dickinson has scored just three fewer.

Fly-half Russell Bennett is the third highest points scorer in the division.

Strengths and weaknesses

Ampthill’s strength tends to be good interplay between the backs to release their flying wingers, particularly Cambriani.

Cambriani is listed as centre/wing and therefore the Knights don’t know what position he will play until the team is announced.

Dickinson, or whoever is peeling off the set piece to score, will also provide a threat.

Verdict

Knights will be keen to maintain their fortress Castle Park reputation, while Ampthill will be intent on regaining that winning feeling after a loss last weekend.

A close game is in prospect looking at the three previous meetings between these sides.

Fixtures

Bedford Blues v Hartpury, Coventry v Cornish Pirates, London Scottish v Ealing Trailfinders, Jersey Reds v Richmond.