Doncaster RLFC: Focus now on defence, says Paul Cooke

Action from the Dons' defeat to Bradford.
Action from the Dons' defeat to Bradford.

Having seen a marked improvement in attack in Sunday’s 56-38 Championship defeat against high-flying Bradford Bulls, Dons’ boss Paul Cooke is concentrating his efforts on defence this week.

Said Cooke: “We’d not attacked too well this season and had only been averaging 12 points a game so in the two weeks leading up to the Bradford game, apart from a bit of defensive work, I solely concentrated on attack.

“I think that showed on Sunday with what we dished up in attack.

“To score 38 points against anyone but Leigh or Bradford (in this division) and you are probably looking at winning the game.

“They are a good side and are full-time so we are encouraged by the steps we’ve taken. But, as I told the players, it doesn’t mean that we are going to score 38 points every week and win games.

“What it does show is that we are capable of attacking better than we have done in the previous ten games. It’s the best we’ve played in attack in 2015 but I still think we can improve as we missed some good opportunities.

“What we are working on this week is the ruck area and other areas (of defence) which cost us dearly on Sunday.”

Cooke is hoping that Leigh will agree to extend half-back Dan Reynolds’ initial one-month loan spell this week, and is also hoping to retain the services of Hull FC’s teenage stand-off Jordan Abdull for the trip to Halifax following his impressive debut.

“Barring an injury crisis at Hull it looks like he’ll be here for a bit longer, along with Jansin (Turget) and Bobby (Tyson-Wilson),” said Cooke.