Doncaster Knights: ‘Proud’ Griffiths proving to be right man for the job

Clive Griffiths, pictured in 2006 during his previous spell in charge of Doncaster.
Clive Griffiths, pictured in 2006 during his previous spell in charge of Doncaster.

Doncaster Knights director of rugby Clive Griffiths never thought he would return to Castle Park after quitting following just one season in charge.

But he is delighted that he got the chance to do just that and hopes to have repaid the club's faith in him.

“It was hard to leave at the end of my first season at the club after we finished third in what was then National One back in the 2006-07 season,” said the Welshman, who returned to Castle Park in the first half of the 2012-13 campaign.

“The decision was as tough as when I decided to leave Wales, after breaking into the national (rugby union) team, when St Helens came in with an offer to switch to rugby league.

“I’ve never regretted that decision but it took me a long time to make it and there was a lot of soul searching and a lot of emotion involved at the time.

“It was similar leaving Doncaster at that time, especially in view of what the club had achieved, but I had to give the Premiership a try after being approached by Worcester to become their number two.

“I had some great times at Worcester but when I got the opportunity to come back to Doncaster, who had forgiven me if you like, a few years later, I had no hesitation.

“We’ve had a very successful season and it’s not over yet, but it is not just about me.

“I’ve steered the ship if you like but I’ve had some great hands on board with me. We’ve got a great coaching staff, backroom team and directors and I couldn’t have done it without them.”

Reflecting on a record-breaking campaign, Griffiths said: “Obviously I’ve had success with Wales at international level in both codes over the years and I’ll never forget that.

“But to finish second and make the play-offs has to rank as one of my proudest moments in club rugby in both rugby codes because it’s never been done at Doncaster before. To be the 14th highest-ranked club in English rugby in 2015-16 is certainly a great achievement when you think where Doncaster has come from.”

Knights lead 30-17 going into their promotion play-off semi-final second leg at home to Yorkshire Carnegie on Sunday.