Doncaster Knights: Jersey build-up | Trio sign new deals

Mat Clark
Mat Clark

Doncaster Knights long-serving centre Mat Clark is set to play his first Championship game of the year in tomorrow night’s clash away to Jersey Reds.

Clark has played a handful of games for Sheffield Tigers as he has battled his way to fitness following a series of injuries last year.

Wing Curtis Wilson, No 8 Rory Pitman and hooker Ben Hunter all return to the Doncaster squad following injury problems.

But second-rower Morgan Eames, who had hoped to be in contention after a lengthy lay-off, again misses out.

Knights will fly out to Jersey at 8.30am.

“It’s going to be a long day for the players but we’ll be doing everything to ensure they are ready to go at kick-off time,” said Griffiths.

Jersey will go into the game having lost just once at home in 12 months and fancying their chances of completing a league double following their 47-22 win at Castle Park earlier in the season.

Clashes between the two sides have traditionally been tight and director of rugby Clive Griffiths claimed that Knights’ margin of defeat at Castle Park didn’t reflect the game.

“We had a try disallowed and then they scored two converted tries late on,” said the Welshman. “It was a much closer game on the day than the scoreline would suggest.”

Knights go into the game on the back of successive defeats following three successive victories.

“We’ve lacked consistency for most of the season and we never know what team is going to turn up,” admitted Griffiths.

“Hopefully it will be the team which run Ealing off their feet for 30 minutes in the first half down there last month and not the team which played in the second half of that match and the first 40 minutes against Nottingham last time out.

“The players have been fully briefed and know what to expect from Jersey.

“They don’t just have a strong pack these days and can also play a more expansive game, and we’ve got to be ready to react to whatever they throw at us.”

Hunter and Matt Challinor have signed new one-year deals with Knights, while Dougie Flockhart has penned a two-year extension.