Howells backs Davey’s appointment

Brett Davey will take over as Knights' director of rugby at the end of the season.
Brett Davey will take over as Knights' director of rugby at the end of the season.

Knights coach Lynn Howells welcomed the appointment of Brett Davey this week and hailed him as his natural successor, writes Peter Catt.

Assistant coach Davey will take over the reins from Howells when his fellow Welshman steps down at the end of the season.

But the planning for the new campaign has already begun and Davey will be heavily involved in recruitment and deciding which players’ contracts will be renewed as from now.

The 38-year-old former Pontypridd and Barbarians full back was appointed from a lengthy list of applicants for the post last week and he was backed by a strong recommendation from the current boss.

Howells said: “It’s no secret that when I brought Brett to the club from Cornish Pirates two years ago it was with an eye to mentoring him to take on my role when I left.

“I had him as a player and have seen him close up coaching alongside me and I think he is ideally suited to the post.

“He’s been around the Championship for some time and has a great knowledge of players at this level.

“But what marks him out for me as a bit different is what I call an ability to ‘think outside the square’.

“He had that as a player as well, and basically it’s being able to think a bit differently sometimes and do the unusual if necessary to make things happen and get the job done.”

The news of Davey’s appointment was greeted wit a big cheer from the players, according to Howells, and it was quickly followed by the Knights first league win since November when they beat Plymouth Albion 27-16 at Castle Park last Saturday.

Fly half Tristan Roberts notched 20 of his side’s points scoring the opening try in the seventh minute and adding five penalties and a conversion.

Knights led 16-13 at the interval but the visitors hit back to level the scores before Howells’ men had the last word when substitute Andy Wright touched down.

Howells said: “I thought we started and finished the game well and struggled in the middle - but to get the win was all important.”

Sixth placed Doncaster now travel to Rotherham Titans on Saturday (2pm) knowing that a victory will confirm their place in the promotion play-offs.

Howells said: “We still have a chance of finishing fifth and that’s what we are aiming for.

“There is always an extra buzz when we play Rotherham.

“The form book goes out of the window when it comes to local derbies and they are usually decided in favour of the team that makes the least mistakes.”