DONCASTER Knights will have to regroup for two further battles in three days this week after suffering a last-gasp 15-14 Championship defeat at home to derby rivals Rotherham on Saturday.
Behind for most of a mainly scrappy game played in front of a bumper 4,000-plus crowd and the Sky Sports cameras, Titans claimed their first-ever win at Castle Park with a long-range angled injury-time penalty by fly-half Garry Law.
Although disappointed that his side had failed to avenge a defeat at Clifton Lane earlier in the season, Knights’ boss Brett Davey praised the way that Law had judged the blustery wind to perfection.
One of the major talking points after the game was Knights’ decision to kick to touch and a lineout three minutes from time rather than attempt a kickable penalty, which had they converted would have left Rotherham trailing 17-12 and needing a converted try to win the game.
“Those sort of decisions are always easier with hindsight,” said Davey. “We’d been winning our lineouts all afternoon and the plan was to camp in their 22 and eat up time. Unfortunately we lost the lineout.”
Davey gave a starting debut to young Irish fly-half Gareth Quinn-McDonogh.
“He’s a lot to learn though he showed moments of real class” said Davey. “He’s a really good kid but he doesn’t understand how we play at the moment and that takes time.
Knights led 14-7 at the break and Davey said: “We spoke about it (how we’d played) at half-time and we said the right things. But Rotherham they kept coming in the second half with their big runners and although they scored a try I thought we defended particularly well.
“I never felt that we were in any danger even though we only had a two-point lead. I thought that we were doing more than enough to shut the game down.”