Rugby Union: Blackett tipped as youngest coach as Titans end on high

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Rotherham finished their Championship season on a triumphant note, earning a maximum of five points at Clifton Lane where London Scottish were beaten by four tries to three in a highly entertaining contest.

The 33-26 Titans win enabled them to end in seventh place,a creditable achievement which now must be built on by the successor to Alex Codling who was in charge for the last time.

Rotherham’s record of 10 wins in 22 league games and 11 defeats may not have achieved the ambition of finishing in the top four set by Codling’s predecessor,Andre Bester, but they have survived a volatile season and ended it with three consecutive victories.

It seems likely that assistant coach Lee Blackett will be appointed to the top job,making him at 30,one of the youngest in the Championship.

Rotherham,leading 13-10 at half time against Scottish,scored four excellent tries on 18, 44, 58 and 79 minutes by Laurence Pearce, Curtis Wilson, Charlie Mulchrone and Toby Freeman.

Fly-half James McKinney, who is leaving to joinUlster, made a significant contribution in his final game, kicking two conversions and three penalties.

A class act,McKinney will be missed and Titans’ fans will be hoping that a more than adequate replacement has been signed or will be recruited.

Codling, who has accepted a role at London club Rosslyn Park, was delighted that his short tenure at Clifton Lane, which began in November following Bester’s depature, finished in style: “I am so proud of the team who have never let me down.To take five points from a side like London Scottish is a great way to sign it all off.”

Titans: Styles, Doneghan, Gill, Blackett, Wilson, McKinney, Mulchrone, Kilbane, Stagg, Davies, Thomas, Sanderson, Rieder, Kirwan, Pearce. Replacements:Nonu, Williams, Gadd, Denman, Patrick, Freeman. Tries: Pearce, Wilson, Mulchrone, Freeman.Conversions: McKinney 2.Penalties: McKinney 3.