DONCASTER DONS: Seven tries as Dons go top

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DONCASTER are today flying high at the top of Championship One after romping to a 38-6 win against Rochdale Hornets at Spotland.

The Dons, who have now played a game more than their top four rivals, ran in seven tries against a Rochdale side expected to be in the promotion mix come August in the only Championship One fixture of the weekend.

“It was a complete performance,” said Dons’ boss Tony Miller, who admitted that he would have settled for an 8-6 win prior to the game.

“Rochdale is always a tough place to go but defensively we were outstanding as we were offensively,” he told The Star.

Fears that the game, featuring two sides who like to throw the ball about, would be spoilt as a spectacle by the blustery wind and rain proved groundless.

“I thought it was a good game in what were horrendous conditions,” said Miller.

“We didn’t try and play too much of an expansive game but I thought that our last play options were really good, especially in the first half with Paul Cooke scoring a try and having a hand in the two others as we led 16-0 at half-time.”

Rochdale boss John Stankevich said that he had used last season’s play-off quarter-final win over the Dons, where his charges had overturned a substantial interval deficit to eventually win through, to try and inspire his players at half-time and they responded with an early try.

“The first 10 minutes of the second half was probably the most dangerous part of the game for us,” said Miller.

“They got it back to 16-6 and I thought at the time that the next try would be vital.

“Fortunately we weathered the storm and scored four more tries and were good value.

With Chris Spurr crying off with a calf injury, Miller gave a debut to new signing Dan Cowling in the centre.