Neath 15 Doncaster Knights 15

Doncaster Knights director of rugby Clive Griffiths. Photo: Marie Caley
Doncaster Knights director of rugby Clive Griffiths. Photo: Marie Caley

Doncaster Knights began their pre-season schedule with a hard fought draw at Welsh Premiership outfit Neath.

Tyson Lewis and Will Foden were on the trysheet as Doncaster outscored their hosts by two tries to nil.

However, Neath refused to lie down and fought back from 12-3 to earn a draw.

The friendly contest turned ugly in the closing stages when several brawls broke out and Neath’s Lee Evans was dismissed for fighting.

Doncaster were also hit by a worrying-looking to injury to scrum half Brad Field who, in his first appearance since November, was forced off just before half time.

The boot of James Thomas gave Neath the early advantage at a wet and windy Gnoll.

But Doncaster - fielding three trialists and nine debutants - gradually got to grips with the conditions and their opposition.

They got on the scoreboard through Lewis, who latched onto a neat kick from fly half Jamie Lennard. Dougie Flockhart added the extras.

Knights’ second try was down to forward power. From a driving line out, Neath were unable to prevent the visitors forcing their way over, with flanker Foden emerging with the ball.

While Doncaster had enjoyed the better of the first half, the second period was a different story as Neath found their rhythm.

Thomas kicked three successful penalties to level matters, before Flockhart and Thomas traded kicks to leave the score at 15-15 going into the final ten minutes.

As tempers flared, Clive Griffiths’ men thought they had stolen victory right at the death when Flockhart crossed but he was adudged to have gone into touch.

Doncaster host Swansea at Castle Park on Saturday.