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Second half comeback not enough as Doncaster edge out Scots at Castle Park

Second half comeback not enough as Doncaster edge out Scots at Castle Park

London Scottish suffered an agonising 29-23 defeat to Doncaster Knights, with a second-half hat-trick from Jason Harries not enough to complete a remarkable comeback.

London Scottish suffered an agonising 29-23 defeat to Doncaster Knights, with a second-half hat-trick from Jason Harries not enough to complete a remarkable comeback.

The Scots trailed 21-6 at the break but came out firing early in the second half. Harries scored three tries in 15 minutes to put his side ahead, but a Tyson Lewis try for the hosts secured them a bonus-point victory at Castle Park. 

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Scottish started strongly and two penalties from Peter Lydon gave them a 6-0 lead with 20 minutes on the clock, before Doncaster took control of the match with three tries before half time. 

Harry Allen drove over the line for the first try of the afternoon from a rolling maul on the 30 minute mark, with Dec Cusack’s conversion giving the Knights a 7-6 lead. 

Sean Scanlon then scored just three minutes later to extend their advantage. With sustained pressure in the Scottish 22  a chip in behind was gathered by the full-back to score in the corner, and Cusack again converted to put them 14-6 ahead. 

With the last play of the half another Doncaster try gave them a 21-6 lead at the break. Scottish had a scrum deep in the Knights’ 22 and were inching closer to scoring, before Lloyd Hayes intercepted and ran the length of the field to score under the posts. 

The Scots looked like a different team in the early stages of the second half, with some brilliant attacking rugby on display. 

Harries got his first try with 47 minutes on the clock. A five metre line out gave the Scots a platform and the rolling maul powered towards the line, allowing the Welshman to drive over and score, and cut the deficit to 21-11. 

Just two minutes later Harries scored again to bring the Scots to within one score. With a number of phases to approach the 22, Harry Sheppard received the ball and threw a great dummy to break through a number of defenders. The fly-half drew in the final man and passed to Harries who ran in under the posts. Lydon’s conversion made it 21-18. 

Harries completed his hat-trick on the hour mark to put the Scots ahead. After a five metre scrum the ball was passed wide, and with an overlap on the left side the winger scored in the corner to give Scottish a 23-21 lead.

Doncaster responded five minutes later to re-take the lead. A grubber kick in behind allowed Tyson Lewis to use his pace and win the race to the ball to score in the corner. 

Scottish were pressing but the Knights gave themselves a six-point cushion with a penalty from Cusack to put them 29-23 ahead with two minutes remaining. 

The Scots were unable to create another opportunity and Doncaster booted the ball out of play to celebrate a hard-fought victory, in a match where Scottish can feel hard done by not to come away with a win.  

Doncaster Knights:
15. Sean Scanlon, 14. Paul Jarvis, 13. Lloyd Hayes, 12. Mat Clark, 11. Tyson Lewis, 10. Declan Cusack, 9. Michael Heaney, 1. Richard List, 2. Harry Allen, 3. WillGriff John, 4. Matt Challinor, 5. David Nolan, 6. Jarad Williams, 7. Beau Robinson, 8. Alex Shaw.

Replacements:
16. Robin Hislop, 17. Ben Hunter, 18. Colin Quigley, 19. Latu Makaafi, 20. Joe Sproston, 21, Dougie Flockhart, 22. Ben White

Scorers:
Tries: Harry Allen (30 minutes) Sean Scanlon (33 minutes) Lloyd Hayes (40 minutes) Tyson Lewis (65 minutes)
Conversions: Declan Cusack (30, 33, 40 minutes)
Penalties: Declan Cusack (76 minutes)

London Scottish: 
15 Peter Lydon 14 Craig Holland 13 Robbie Fergusson 12 Patrick Kelly (replaced by Tom Galbraith) 11 Jason Harries 10 Harry Sheppard 9 Jamie Stevenson 1 Grant Shells (replaced by Jonny Harris) 2 David Cherry (replaced by Cameron Fenton) 3 Ewan McQuillin (replaced by Dan Koroi) 4 Rory Bartle (c) 5 Neale Patrick 6 Ally Miller 7 Joe Atkinson 8 Ifereimi Boladau (replaced by Matt Marley)

Replacements: 
16 Cameron Fenton 17 Jonny Harris 18 Dan Koroi 19 Dom McGeekie 20 Matt Marley 21 Ed Hoadley 22 Tom Galbraith

Scorers: 
Tries: Jason Harries (46, 49, 61 minutes)
Conversions: Peter Lydon (49 minutes)
Penalties: Peter Lydon (6, 19 minutes)

Officials: 
Referee: Darren Gamage
Assistant Referees: Darryl Chapman & Matthew Daubney
Fourth Official: Jamie Leahy

Half-Time Score: Doncaster Knights 21 – 6 London Scottish

Attendance: 1339

Watch post-match reaction from hat-trick scorer Jason Harries as well as match highlights below:

 

 

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