Doncaster Knights v Ealing Trailfinders: '˜This is our toughest home game so far' - Griffiths

Doncaster Knights boss Clive Griffiths is under no illusion about the size of the task in tomorrow's testing top-four Championship clash against Ealing Trailfinders at Castle Park.

Friday, 3rd February 2017, 05:00 am
Updated Thursday, 2nd February 2017, 09:46 am
Clive Griffiths

“It will probably be our most difficult game of the season to win at home so far,” said Griffiths.

“I was surprised by how close their game last weekend against (unbeaten leaders) London Irish was and that the Exiles needed a late penalty to win the game.

“Having said that, I didn’t think it would be a cakewalk for Irish either because it’s very hard down there. I can’t stress enough how different it is to play on their plastic pitch. The surroundings don’t help either.

“Even though they lost last week, they’ll come up here expecting to win and won’t show us any respect. They didn’t respect us down there, where we lost 27-14 after a poor display, and ran over the top of us.

“They’ve recruited players who are very experienced at Championship level and some of whom have played even higher.

“So I’ve no illusions about the task facing us, but there is now a bit of daylight between us and that will be even more the case if we beat them tomorrow, so it’s in our hands now.

“If we attack like we did in the first half at Bedford on Saturday it will take a good team to stop us as we were very clinical.

“It was certainly pleasing to see all the new stuff we’ve been working on such as different shapes coming to fruition.

“It’s not happened overnight and there has been evidence of what we’ve been trying to do in other games recently but we didn’t always finish as we would have liked.”

Fly-half Declan Cusack is set to return to the starting line-up.

Cusack came on as a second half replacement at Bedford after Simon Humberstone was taken off with concussion.

“Simon had been playing well and deserved to keep his place,” said Griffiths.

“Declan had suffered a knock in training the previous week and we were not sure he’d last the 80 minutes. The plan was always to bring him on in the second half but we had to do so earlier than expected after Simon came off after 53 minutes.”