Doncaster Knights: Griffiths focused on preparations

Doncaster Knights director of rugby Clive Griffiths. Picture: Liz Mockler D4026LM
Doncaster Knights director of rugby Clive Griffiths. Picture: Liz Mockler D4026LM

Director of rugby Clive Griffiths has enthused about the club’s pre-season preparations and insists the Knights are close to being the “real deal”.

Knights have been back in training for several weeks ahead of their first run-out on August 17 against Sheffield Tigers RFC.

The club is also getting over the news that recent signing Will Foden is likely to face the 2013/14 campaign on the sidelines after suffering a serious injury to his left knee which requires corrective surgery.

Despite the setback, the club is working hard to bounce back from National League One following last term’s Championship relegation and have Dons rugby league stand-off Paul Cooke helping out at training.

Griffiths also said they were looking at bringing in further additions to bolster the squad and give them the best possible chance of bouncing straight back to the Championship.

“We’ve made good progress in what we’ve done so far, we are ahead of schedule, particularly on the playing side of things,” he said.

“Paul [Cooke] has been working with the boys, implementing his ideas and systems, running through our shapes and working on handling.”

“The front row are all very excited as we’re getting stuck into some scrum work and they’re getting their heads around the shortened triggers,” added Griffiths.

Phil Keith-Roach, scrum coach to the 2003 England World Cup winning squad, is also working with the side on set-piece plays.

Despite admitting to not yet being the finished article, Griffiths firmly believes the squad will be ready before the pre-season programme is complete and is looking forward to the developments that are still to take place before rugby resumes.

“With the large amount of new players we have brought in over the summer we definitely wanted to get started early but I am content with where we are at the moment,” Griffiths added.

“There will still be things that need work by the time we play Sheffield but by the time we face up to Hull we will be very close to the real deal, we are also still looking at a couple more players to bring in.”