Rotherham Titans (20) vs Doncaster Knights (42) - Championship Play Off Pool B Table
We look forward to welcoming Doncasters players, officials and supporters for tomorrow's match. It is fitting that the game sees the best that South Yorkshire rugby has to offer going head to head for the fifth time this season.
Doncaster will come to Clifton Lane knowing that a win will boost the chances of a semi final spot in the Championship play off's. The Titans will be determined to bulid on last Saturdays performance against the Cornish Pirates.
It goes without saying that the game will be a physical encounter with local rivalary adding a bit of extra spice to the equation. The warm spring sunshine will add an extra dimension to the afternoon with both sides looking to play a fast flowing expansive game.
The Titans will be well aware from previous encounters with the Knights that any lapse in concentration can lead to Doncasters lively back line turning defence into attack in the blink of an eye.
Once again the Knights will feature many former Titans who know just what this game means to the area and in particular the Rotherham faithful.
The game kicks off at 3pm and promises to be a great occasion for supporters of both sides.
Season ticket holders and those purchasing an adult ticket will be entitled to bring 2 U16's to the game free of charge, we hope to see as many supporters from both sides at the game tomorrow.
As with every side that has visited Clifton Lane this season we hope that our visitors will leave us having experienced the unique match day experience that sets Rotherham apart.
We pride ourselves in offering supporters great entertainment on the pitch, a welcome in the stands and a great atmosphere for supporters of all ages in the club house.
See you at the game!!!
The Titans failed to register their first victory in the play offs against a lively Doncaster team who can now consider themselves serious contenders for a semi final spot.
The Titans fielded an unfamiliar centre pairing of Simeon James and Pete Swatkins, with Matty James once again at full back following an impressive outing against the Pirates. Up front Ben Harris dropped into the second row to allow a start for Jamie Kilbane.
The game started well enough with Dan Baines crashing over for an early score. Cliifie Hodgson, taking over the kicking duties from the injured Socino, was unsuccessful with the conversion.
Almost immediately Doncaster struck back, the dry conditions seemed to suit their lively back line and Oli Goss was able to capitalise on some uncertainty in the Rotherham defence. Tristan Roberts added the extras to give the Knights a 2 point lead with just 10 minutes on the clock.
Both sides were trying to gain the upper hand, and Doncasters tactic of putting the ball high at every opportunity seemed to be a sensible one. Just as the Knights seemed to be settling into their game the Titans forwards put together a useful passage of play which allowed Louis McGowan to add to his already impressive tally of tries. This time Hodgson was spot on with the conversion.
Goss crossed again for the Knights just as the Titans were looking to establish some authority on proceedings. Ryan Burrows was everywhere in defence and attack, determined to impress in his final home match in a Titans shirt and took pleasure in hunting down Knights winger Dougie Flockhart on more than one occasion.
A penalty to Rotherham gave Hodgson the chance to make up for his earlier missed conversion, which he did to give the Titans a 15 - 14 half time lead.
On paper the second half was a much more one sided affair. Doncaster crossed the line on 42, 46 and 55 minutes courtesy of Ed Jackson, Steve Boden and Flockhart. Bristol bound Tristan Roberts was successful with the conversion to push the Knights out to a 35 - 15 lead.
Few were surprised to see that Louis McGowan was in the right place at the right time to narrow the gap on the hour mark. Hodgson once again was just wide with the conversion.
Any hopes of a Titans come back were dashed when Stevie McColl crossed for the visitors. This try was once again converted by Roberts to give Doncaster a 42 - 20 lead.
Despite some late Rotherham pressure the final whistle blew giving the Knights a 22 point victory.
Those who stayed behind to see Juan Pablo Socino collect his supporters club player of the year award, would have been wondering how the Titans managed to conspire to gift their South Yorkshire neighbours so many points.
The Titans have one final game away at Bedford next Saturday, knowing that a repeat of this error strewn performance will have only one outcome at Goldington Road.
Rotherham Titans: M James, Hampsey (McMahon 61), Swatkins (Du Randt 66), S James, Rhodes, Hodgson, Bedford, Kilbane (Loney 55), Baines (Smidt 65), ODonnell, Harris, McGowan, Doneghan (Worrall 55), Burrows (Aikman 55), Dougall Replacement not used: George
Doncaster Knights: McColl, Flockhart, Goss (Briers 78), Wright (Gates 78), Williams, Roberts, Hampson, Frazier, Boden (Corsar 74), Thiede, Parsons, Craig, Makaafi (Farivarz HT), Jackson (Rowan 65), Cochrane (Lawrie 70) Replacement not used: Devlin