Doncaster Knights: Richard List not ready to make retirement call just yet

Richard List
Richard List

With his long hair and beard Doncaster Knights prop Richard List has often looked as much a heavy rock musician as a rugby union player over the years.

But irrespective of whether or not he is musically inclined, more often than not List’s performances have struck a chord with Castle Park supporters during his time at the club.

List has been a mainstay of the Doncaster front-row since re-joining them in the second half of the 2013-14 season after five years plying his trade in France and is a member of Knights ‘200 Club.’

Due to increased competition for places in the front-row following summer signings and several other factors, the Castle Park faithful have seen less of the popular Thorne-born forward than usual so far this season.

That situation won’t change in the immediate future as a result of him having a knee operation earlier this week.

“It’s just a routine operation and although I will miss the next few games hopefully I’ll be back again before the end of the Championship Cup group games,” he said prior to Tuesday’s surgery.

“I’d had a bit of a niggle over the previous three or four weeks and things came to a head and it was starting to restrict some of my movement so we decided to get it sorted rather than struggling on. If things go okay I will still have half of the season left.”

Despite some suggestion before the start of the current campaign that List was considering hanging up his boots at the end of the season, the 37-year-old insists he has not made any decision on his playing future at this moment in time.

“I’m still undecided,” he said. “I’ve lost a bit of weight and I’ve still got a spring in my step and I’m still enjoying the game and I love playing here. I’ll make a decision later in the season.

“When I get the chance to play I still feel like I’m holding my own and doing a job on the field and when I stop doing that then I’ll hold my hand up and say it’s time to finish.”

Reflecting on the season so far, List said: “We’ve made a mixed start and we’ve not had a great league campaign to date but we are starting to get things right and we had a good win at London Scottish and that followed a good second half at Bedford and a good performance, again in defeat, against leaders London Irish.

“We also got our Championship Cup campaign off to a winning start against Coventry on Saturday so we are starting to build a bit of momentum. We are also getting a few players, such as Will Owen and Paul Jarvis, back from injury.

“Hopefully we can go down to Lady Bay on Friday night and pick up another win over Nottingham in our bid to make knock-out  stages of a competition we are hoping to do well in.

“They’ve had a good start to the league season (though they lost their opening Cup game at Headingley on Sunday) and they beat us down there (20-15) in October.

“I wouldn’t say it’s a shock to have seen them in the top four because they’ve got some good players and they were very impressive when they beat (second-placed) Ealing a couple of weeks ago and Lady Bay isn’t an easy place to win.

“We want to get through to the knock-out stages of the Cup next season and at the same time get back to how we know we can play and start climbing the table again when the league campaign resumes at the end of next month.

“We don’t feel that we are a bottom-four side and we want to be challenging for a top-four spot in the second half of the season.”