Doncaster Knights: Home form vital says boss Clive Griffiths

Rugby Union
Rugby Union

SURVIVAL begins at home according to Knights boss Clive Griffiths.

The Knights slipped to a seventh consecutive defeat as they were beaten 31-18 in a mud bath at Cornish Pirates on Sunday, keeping them five points adrift of safety.

But Knights turned in a much improved performance, competing well with the play-off chasing Pirates.

Griffiths is hoping the renewed confidence can be carried into Saturday’s Yorkshire derby with Leeds Carnegie and he has called upon supporters to roar their side on to victory.

“Home form is going to be vital for us for the rest of the season,” the Welshman said.

“We need to take care of business in our own backyard first and foremost but we need a crowd who are going to get behind us.

“Leeds will be bringing a few hundred with them and they’ll be desperate to be heard over our supporters.

“We’ve had very little go our way for a long time now – be it luck or decisions from officials. But having our thousand supporters roaring us on will help make the difference.

“We’ve got four games left at home and each one will be vital if we’re going to stay up.”

The Knights will be out to avenge the crushing 42-7 defeat in the reverse fixture but Leeds will be eyeing victory to reboot their play-off hopes after slipping out of the top four last weekend.

Griffiths was pleased with many aspects of the performance against the Pirates but said defeat was hard to take.

He said: “We competed so well for so long and I was really confident that the lads would go on and win it after going in at 13-13 at half time.

“But the Pirates controlled territory in the second half and in those conditions there was little chance of us being able to do anything about it.

“The lads battled their socks off so for the game to slip away from them in that manner was gut-wrenching.”