Second half rally earns Dons a bonus point

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DONCASTER produced a spirited second half showing in yesterday’s home Northern Rail Cup pool clash against Championship outfit York City Knights to claim a losing bonus point.

But the Championship One side had given themselves too much to do after trailing by 19 points at half-time and went down 29-18.

“We were way off the pace in the first half and our contact on defence was poor,” said Dons’ boss Tony Miller.

“We gave them too much respect and we didn’t earn the right to play football. We also gave a lot of penalties away and we were having to defend a lot in our own half.

“In the second half we completed all our 18 sets (of six tackles) and it is the first time I can remember us doing that.

“And to win the second half 12-4 after having to do a lot of tough defence in the first half showed a lot of character; we just need to smarten up and learn from our errors. I thought that we got better the longer the game went on. We’d played on the Wednesday and we made a fair few changes today which didn’t help with the cohesion.”

Trailing 25-6 at the break the Dons knew that they needed to score first but fell further behind when York winger Pryce went over.

The game marked the first appearance at the Keepmoat in a Doncaster shirt of former Super League star Paul Cooke.

“He hadn’t played for over 12 months (when he joined us) and for him to have played two games in five days is testament to the work he has been doing to get himself into shape,” said Miller,