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Home > News > Coventry 26 Doncaster Knights 20
Your News Coventry 26 Doncaster Knights 20

Written by John Butler

Saturday, 31 January 2009

Every so often there comes a match and a performance that can certainly be classed as’’ one to remember’’. If you happen to be a supporter of the Blue and Whites, this was quite simply one of those days.

Refusing to be bullied by a very physical Doncaster side, Coventry stuck to their task in a quite superb manner to not only record one of the notable successes in the Division this season, they also recorded a much needed try bonus point. Taken in the context of the positions in the Division, this fine win could turn out to be very important indeed.

After the disappointments of Bedford, at least on this occasion Cov did have some of the rub of the green, many will surely say though their overall performance deserved it. There were several times when the sides composure looked as if it might let them down, some tackles were missed, but against a side riding high and fourth in the table it was inevitable not every aspect would be A1 all the time. What however could never be questioned by anyone who witnessed this superb effort was the sheer character, fitness and commitment of the whole Cov squad. Every ‘’ man jack’’ did his job in a truly great team win for which they should be richly proud.

Yet it all started most unpromisingly with the Knights looking strong and powerful from the outset putting great pressure on home defences. Then, from absolutely nowhere came a remarkable Cov try. From inside his own 22, Jamie Miller who hade an outstanding match stole the ball away to burst fully 45 metres before releasing Tom Slater. The young Welshman, hotly pursued just made it from the remaining 35 metres and with Myles Dorrian converting right against the run of play Cov were 7 -0 clear.

Nathan Jones with a try saving tackle on McColl saved Cov two minutes later before the home side made their first real entry into the opposing 22 since the try. It was not long however before Cov were back defending and on the 20th minute Doncaster were level. The powerful Knights forwards pressurised at four close in scrums before at the fifth referee Hartwell penalised Cov again by awarding a penalty try, converted by the Division’s top points scorer Lennard.

Within three minutes though Cov were back in front. Again Jamie Miller was a key figure stealing Doncaster possession 40 metres out following a scrum before charging in for a splendid individual try, Dorrian slicing the conversion attempt.

More pressure into the visiting 22 was to bring no further reward, Dorrian badly mis-kicking a penalty attempt after 28 minutes. The match however already had become very physical, Cov were competing well, with Doncaster, despite having a welter of position and possession becoming frustrated as Lennard failed with a drop goal attempt.

On 37 minutes the visitors were made to pay dearly for their indiscretions when after McColl had crossed for a try, the referee after information from his touch judges ruled out the score, prop Tau having been seen to deliver a series of punches in the build up. Visiting frustrations grew even bigger in injury time, flanker Kettle being yellow carded for deliberate offside at a line out.

Leading 12 -7 was quite an effort by the Cov squad based on the half overall, but within three minutes of the restart it got even better. After Tom Slater had been edged out in the right hand corner, a Myles Dorrian chip was gathered in his stride by the ubiquitous Jamie Miller who stormed in for his second and Cov’s third try, Myles Dorrian’s conversion giving his side a 12 point cushion.

Doncaster however were soon to retaliate with 13 points in eight minutes. The reliable Lennard boot put over two penalties as well as converting a Wes Davies try with a move begun in the Donny 22. Suddenly the Yorkshire men were 19 -20 in front.

Coventry though were in no mood to concede anything further and on 68 minutes came what turned out to be a defining and match winning score. A Doncaster pass went loose, Donovan Sanders fly hacked on before collecting the ball in his stride for try number four and a vital bonus point. Myles Dorrian converted for 26 -20.

Cov then appeared to be edging ever closer to victory , but not before, after possession had been kicked away and the home crowd were subjected to fully nine minutes of nail biting injury time. How Coventry kept their visitors out as Doncaster hammered away with a series of pick up and drives will remain surely one of the season’s high spots.

Finally as Doncaster lost possession a Cov boot gratefully put the ball into touch for the referee to blow full time. The standing ovation given at the end said it all, this was and will be remembered for a long time by those who witnessed it as a great team win and one which should do absolute wonders for team morale.

Coventry. Ben Toft, Tom Slater, George Dixon, Donovan Sanders, Ollie Winter, Myles Dorrian, Nathan Jones, Rob Dugard, Chris Whitehead, Rudi Brits, Sam Herrington, Carl Burgess, Henno Venter (Capt), Jamie Miller, Laurie McGlone.

Replacements; David Lyons for Burgess, Darren Clayton for Venter, Ronnie McLean for Slater, Stewart Pearl for Whitehead, Tommy Hayes for Toft, Ben Pons for Miller, Ricky Whitehall for Brits.

Coventry. Tries. Jamie Miller 2, Tom Slater, Donovan Sanders. Conversions. Myles Dorrian 3.

Doncaster. Tries. Wes Davies, penalty try. Conversions. Jamie Lennard 2. Penalty goals. Lennard 2

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