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Doncaster RLFC: Horne bemoans below-par Dons after Hunslet defeat

Charlie Martin looks to break through a tackle from former Dons ace Duane Straughier
Charlie Martin looks to break through a tackle from former Dons ace Duane Straughier

The Dons dropped out of the top three of the Betfred League One for the first time this season after suffering a 35-16 defeat against Hunslet Hawks at the Keepmoat Stadium.

Their third home defeat of the season against the ninth-placed Hawks, and Oldham’s big win over West Wales Raiders saw the relegated Lancashire side replace them in third spot on points difference.

Head coach Richard Horne admitted that the Dons were well below par on the day and that they contributed to their downfall.

“Our inability to build any sort of pressure at times hurt us as we didn’t go through the processes we’d worked on in midweek,” he said.

“We didn’t earn ourselves the right to play in their 20 and when we did get up there I thought our execution and timing was awful

“We also didn’t make them work hard enough to get out of their own half and when we did we gave away a penalty or came up with an error so we made it hard for ourselves.

“I thought that we started the game really well and I thought we’d got these after about ten minutes but then we started making errors.

“I thought the half-backs were the difference between the two teams. Their halves controlled the game much better than ours did on the day.

“Obviously we’ve had a bit of disruption with (scrum-half) Liam Harris joining Hull FC in midweek but I still had confidence in the boys out there to get the job done but unfortunately they didn’t do it today.”

Although Hunslet came into the game on the back of successive defeats, Horne stressed they hadn’t underestimated them.

“We knew that they were a good team and that they had some good results so we expected a tough game.”