Tough Times For The Knights

The sharpest readers amongst you may have spotted that ickledot mentioned attending three games of rugby last weekend but only described two. Well, there was a third one: Yorkshire Carnegie played Doncaster Knights last Friday evening at the Headingley Stadium in Leeds. Things didn't go well for the Knights. This weekend, on Sunday, they were playing at home against Cornish Pirates. Hopes were high for a more positive display and result.

The evening had been so cold in Leeds; flurries of snow and a biting wind. The Knights had begun quite well, forcing a penalty lineout close to the Carnegie line and then were first to score with a penalty from Declan Cusack (above). After that the home side became more dominant despite a strong Knights' defence. This continued in the second half and the Knights were limited to only occasional forays into their opponents' territory. So opportunities for photographing attacking play were minimal. You can read a more detailed report of the game here.

The weather was much better a weekend later. As with the Otley game on the previous day, the sun shone brightly and the sky had only a few clouds. Once again the Knights began brightly, opening the scoring with a try from Tyson Lewis (above). And as the match report indicates, they did play better overall, competing throughout and staying within a score of their opponents right up until the final play.

Matt Challinor looks for an opening

So there were many more opportunities for photographing action at close range in front of a good crowd and Sky TV cameras.

Ben Hunter in the centre of the maul

But unfortunately the Pirates were better on the day, capitalising on Knights' errors and indiscipline. Well done to them for a 35-26 win that was deserved.

Ben White: a good second half

Now the Knights are on the road for a couple of weeks, first in the league against Jersey Reds and then onto a cup game with London Welsh. By the time they return for a home cup match on 17 December they'll be hoping for better form and fortune. 

Paul Jarvis, try scorer, always a thorn in the Pirates' defence

You can see a few more shots from the game over on Flickr and there'll also be one or two popping up on Instagram (@ickledot) in coming days.