Doncaster Knights: Clive Griffiths previews Newcastle Falcons friendly

Clive Griffiths
Clive Griffiths

Doncaster Knights got their pre-season campaign off to a record-breaking start in Guernsey at the weekend, writes Steve Hossack.

The Championship side ran in 13 tries in a 95-0 win over the Channel Islanders.

However, director of rugby Clive Griffiths (pictured inset) is not getting carried away ahead of Saturday’s game against Premiership outfit Newcastle Falcons at Kingston Park.

“It will be like chalk and cheese,” said the Welshman ahead of the two games against the Falcons, who will feature in the first game to be played on the club’s new pitch as Castle Park on August 25.

“Newcastle will put much more pressure on us going forward and we’ll have to be more patient when we have the ball.

“Both games against them will be a big test for us.”

Knights expect to be boosted by the availability of several of the players who missed out at the weekend, including hooker Ben Hunter.

Griffiths also plans to make numerous changes to his starting line-up as he looks to give his squad as much game-time as possible over the next few weeks.

“The lads who didn’t start at Guernsey will start on Saturday so that everyone will have had a run-out,” he said.

“We’ll then look at mixing and matching in the game against Loughborough Students at Thornensians the following week.”

Strong-running centre Mat Clark, injured in the closing weeks of last season’s campaign, will miss the entire pre-season build-up and is not expected to return to action until the end of September at the earliest.

Knights start the new Championship season at Jersey on September 2.