Doncaster RLFC 50 West Wales Raiders 10: Dons get off the mark in League One with comfortable win
Last season’s top try-scorer Sam Doherty crossed for five of the club’s nine tries which normally would have guaranteed him the man-of-the-match award.
But given that Doherty would be the first to admit that he didn’t have too much work to do to score most of his tries, the strong-running of prop Ross Peltier, which brought him a brace, deservedly caught the sponsors’ eye as the Dons got off the mark in the league at the second attempt.
Despite running out comfortable winners, against a Raiders side which boasted a never-say-die attitude and several impressive individuals, the Dons are still someway short of where they need to be if they are to mount a serious title challenge. However, the talent is undoubtedly there.
The Dons made a series of unforced errors in the opening stages and Raiders enjoyed the better of the territorial exchanges in the first quarter. But they failed to match the finishing power of the Dons and found themselves trailing 10-0 thanks to two early touchdowns by Doherty.
Raiders tested the Doncaster line on several occasions prior to skipper Brad Foster bursting over for another converted try on 25 minutes to make it 16-0.
There was no stopping Peltier, who will trouble better sides than Raiders, on the charge as the Dons opened up a 22-0 lead.
Doherty, who had slightly more to do than his previous two, completed a first-half hat-trick on the stroke of half time. Matty Beharrell’s touchline conversion just crept over the bar to make it 28-0.
Raiders went close on several occasions in the third quarter before the Dons added to their account on 57 minutes with a fourth try in the corner by Doherty.
They scored another three tries in the next ten minutes to open up a 50-0 lead – the pick of which was a long-range effort by Peltier. Doherty and Kieran Cross also touched down.
Raiders’ efforts were rewarded with two tries in the final quarter, during which time the Dons were reduced to 12 men – the second being a long-range effort by speedy winger Robert Matamsosi who caught the eye along with centre Emosi Nadaubale.
Dons: Logan, Doherty, Smeaton, Tali, Rickett, Chase, Beharrell; Horne, Carter, Douglas, Ollett, Bravo, Foster. Subs: Pielter, Wilkinson, Cross, Dixon.