12 March, 2022
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League / Cup
With last weekend deemed a ‘rest’ one for both teams, the Cornish Pirates will travel to Doncaster Knights on Saturday expecting a real battle to take place at Castle Park, where the kick-off is at 2.30pm.
Interest ahead of this fixture has been mighty, for what is a 1st versus 3rd in the league table clash. The Knights have to date acquired 67 points from their 18 matches played, and the Pirates 63 from 16.
The Pirates lost 17-15 on their last visit to Donny’s Castle Park in March last year, but earlier this season won 29-7 at the Mennaye Field. In their last outings two weeks ago, the Cornish Pirates emerged 21-17 winners at home to Jersey Reds, whilst Doncaster Knights recorded an excellent 25-17 victory away to Ealing Trailfinders.
For Saturday’s important clash, the Cornish Pirates make certain changes to the XV that started last time out, including centre Shae Tucker taking a starting role in place of club captain Nicolas De Battista who is carrying a slight injury. A fit again AJ Cant takes one of the wing spots, Tom Kessell is selected at scrum-half, and in the back-row there is a return for flanker Antonio Kiri Kiri. Two committed rugby warriors in the squad are also about to record personal milestones on the day. Lock forward Josh Caulfield will proudly be making his 100th appearance for the club, whereas for No. 8 Tom Duncan, who will now captain the side, it will be his 150th.
Looking forward to this weekend’s battle up north is Cornish Pirates’ joint head coach Alan Paver, who has said:
“This contest will be between two evenly matched teams whose form as also been very similar, so it will be whoever gets it right on the day who will likely prevail.
“Our selection is fairly strong at present because we have a lot of fit bodies, therefore our mindset has to be to maintain confidence and aim to get the job done.”
“As for the milestones about to be reached by Josh and Tom, they are great achievements and both players are a huge part of what we are doing at the moment. We will also need them to be in top form and firing on all cylinders this weekend, in an effort to get on the right side of the score.”
Antonio Kiri Kiri