‘We are fighting for our lives’, admits Doncaster Knights chief Clive Griffiths after Nottingham defeat

Clive Griffiths, left.
Clive Griffiths, left.
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Doncaster Knights finished up on the losing side on the road for only the second time since their return to Championship rugby in yesterday’s game at Meadow Lane.

Knights failed to ease their relegation fears as they slumped to a fifth successive league defeat as Nottingham climbed into the top-four following their 24-3 win.

“We are in a relegation battle now and we are fighting for our lives,” said director of rugby Clive Griffiths.

“Having said that a couple of wins would take a lot of the pressure off.”

The Welshman claimed he had been confident of victory against the fifth-placed hosts: “I certainly didn’t see a 24-3 defeat coming,” he said.

“We went into the game on the back of three successive B & I Cup wins having prepared well with Paul Cooke and Kendo (Glen Kenworthy) having done a great job analysing the opposition,” he said.

“We had some disruption in the build-up with three of the players who started against Cross Keys last week being ruled out for various reasons, but the team we put out was good enough to beat Nottingham

“The year of 2014 has been a massive one for the club and we wanted to end it on a winning note, but it wasn’t to be.

“I couldn’t fault the boys for effort and we defended well for much of the game.

“Much as I like us to play an entertaining brand of rugby and entertain the crowd at Castle Park, we’ve got to get the balance right.”

“We certainly contributed to our downfall by trying to be too ambitious in the wrong areas and generally making too many handling errors.”

Griffiths plans to take in Rotherham’s game at home to Moseley on Boxing Day as part of his preparations for the big South Yorkshire derby at Castle Park on Sunday week.