London Welsh v Doncaster Knights: Plastic pitch is a cause for concern for Griffiths

Clive Griffiths
Clive Griffiths

Doncaster Knights take on London Welsh, the only side they’ve not beaten in their best-ever Championship campaign, in their final game of the regular season tomorrow.

The Exiles, who experienced a torrid season back in the Premiership in 2014-15, kicked off their bid to win their third Championship title in five years with a 35-33 win at Castle Park on the opening day of the season.

But a side expected to be among the front-runners have spent much of the season in the bottom half of the table and have only really started to live up to their potential in the last couple of months during which time they’ve won the B&I Cup and lost just one of their last nine league and cup games.

But it isn’t the Exiles’ recent results which has concerned Knights’ boss Clive Griffiths this week – it’s the prospect of playing on Rosslyn Park’s plastic pitch.

After failing to get the decision overturned, the Welshman – who doesn’t want a repeat of the problems when the club played Ealing back in February ahead of next weekend’s promotion play-off semi-final first leg tie – says he will leave certain players out.

“There were a lot of players carrying bumps and bruises as well as some having painful grass burns,” said Griffiths.

“We’ll still field a strong side but it’s a nothing game as far as we are concerned and the main thing is that we don’t pick up any injuries.”

One man who is set to play on his return from a bicep operation is leading points scorer Dougie Flockhart - who was just wide with a late conversion in the last couple of minutes of the reverse fixture which, had it been successful, would have tied the scores at Castle Park.