Doncaster Knights will break new ground when they play their penultimate pre-season friendly against Loughborough Students at Thornensians’ Coulman Road ground on Saturday (2.30pm).
Knights go into the game boasting a 50-50 record from their two games to date with two tough fixtures to come.
“I could have put four comfortable friendlies together before we played Jersey in our first league game and everything would have looked rosy in the garden but you can sometimes learn more in a defeat than a win,” said director of rugby Clive Griffiths.
“To be honest the game against Guernsey was like a contact only session because we were leagues apart.
“We came down with a bump against Newcastle and the boys have now seen the other side of the fence which will do them good.
“But we’ve got another opportunity to get it together again this weekend as we get closer to the start of the season. We’ll have a few of the players who didn’t feature at Newcastle back, though (hooker) Ben Hunter is still unavailable following a close-season operation.”
He added: “We are expecting another tough challenge from a Loughborough side who will bring a lot of fitness and purpose to the game.
“If the weather holds it will be a damn good game and I’m hoping that we get a good turnout of Doncaster supporters for what is our first pre-season game at home even though it is being played at Thorne.
“I’d like to give Thornensians and their chairman Brian Willis a big rap.
“They’ve all been great and very accommodating and if we can get supporters on all four sides of the pitch - which is looking in excellent condition - then it will make for a great atmosphere and be fantastic.”
Thornensians have attracted several new players including Neil Dunne from Dinnington, young fly half Will Allen from Wheatley Hills, full back Kieran Jones from Ospreys Academy and former Knights academy player Olly Cudworth.
Entry on Saturday is free, while parking is £3.