Dons’ big cup test

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Tony Miller has made a case for the defence after the Dons strolled to their first win of the season against London Skolars.

But he says his new-look side will need to be even meaner to keep Championship team Dewsbury Rams at bay when they visit the Keepmoat Stadium on Sunday (3pm).

Miller this week expressed his pride at Doncaster’s comfortable 32-4 victory over London in the Northern Rail Cup.

And he called for more of the same this weekend when the Dons hope to keep their cup hopes alive.

Miller said: “The way we defended against London was probably our best defensive effort for two years.

“I thought we looked really good as a unit and that sort of display gives us a platform to build on.

“We’ve spent a lot of time in training doing defensive work and on Sunday there were definite signs that things are coming together.

“If we can maintain those sorts of standards defensively - and add one or two things to our game in offensive positions - then we’ll be heading in the right direction.

“Dewsbury are a strong side and it’ll be a good test for us.

“We probably need to win three out of the four Northern Rail Cup games to qualify for the next stage.

“But regardless of whether we go through or not it’s all about building momentum for the league season.

“Hopefully we can carry on where we left off against London.”

Jack Ely bagged two tries as the Dons eased to a comfortable six-try win against the Skolars.

Hooker Ely pounced from close range twice in the space of three minutes after the break to help Doncaster bounce back from defeat at Featherstone Rovers a week earlier.

Chris Spurr was on the end of a flowing move in the seventh minute to put the home side ahead before Dave Arnot levelled the scores with the Skolars’ first real foray forward.

But tries from Liam Crawley and Scott Spaven, converted by Spaven and Stewart Sanderson respectively, gave the Dons a 16-4 lead at half time.

Doncaster continued to dominate possession and territory after the restart and Ely made his mark by powering over the line on 52 and 55 minutes.

Kyle Kesik, who has escaped further action for his sending off at Rovers, added a sixth try midway through the second period when he spotted a gap and crossed from close range and Sanderson added his third conversion of the game to complete the scoring.

Kesik (groin), Spaven (knee) and Spurr (dead leg) face fitness tests ahead of this weekend.

n Doncaster will host amateur side Thatto Heath Crusaders in the third round of the Carnegie Challenge Cup.

The St Helens based side currently sit second in Division One of the North West Counties League.

The tie will be played at the Keepmoat Stadium over the weekend of March 5/6.

n Bentley Good Companions lost 40-24 at Featherstone Lions in the quarter-finals of the Fred Marshall Senior Cup.

Doncaster Toll Bar, meanwhile, won 36-14 at Crofton Cougars to go fourth in Yorkshire One.