Match report taken from the Telegraph & Argus:-
Otley knew they had a difficult opening game back in National League One at ambitious Doncaster Knights and so it proved as they went down 36-15.
A disappointingly small crowd were kept quiet by Otley’s great start and it was 18 minutes before the hosts crossed the half-way line.
In the absence of Dan Hyde, scrum half Dave McCormack took over as skipper and new boy Mike McCormish made his debut in the back row, a unit which worked well with No 8 Max Lewis also catching the eye. Already shorn of back-row flyer Xavier Andre, Otley were also hit by the late withdrawals of second-row Richard Snowball and centre Paul Mooney. With Rob Whatmuff unavailable, Kyle Dench and Jon Buchanan were presented with their opportunity in the midfield.
A crunching head-on tackle by Dench set up Otley’s first score. A knock-on provided a scrum on the home 22 where McCormack ran the ball and, after a burst from Lewis, took a return pass to dodge over, Robin Kitching converting.
Doncaster replied when left winger Chris Hughes found a gap to race for the corner and they took a half-time lead when their No 8 finished off a neat move to go in at the posts for fly half Alistair Warnock to convert.
Bryn Griffiths burst through and, after being brought down ten metres short, the ball went quickly to Warnock, who slipped over and converted.
Having missed a first-half attempt, Kitching landed a 40-metre penalty but Doncaster replied with a great drive from a line-out, Griffiths making the touch-down.
On 66 minutes, full back Anthony Carter came up on the outside to go in at the corner but Otley were still full of fight and Kitching was up to ground a neat grubber kick from sub Rhodes.
Otley could feel disappointed to be 29-15 down and a try from sub Toma Toka five minutes into injury time, converted by Warnock, gave an even falser slant to their performance.
Doncaster: A Carter (J Lennard 76); A Wright; G Hughes; H Tonga’uiha; C Hughes (B Armitage 50); A Warnock; C Hallam (J Albinson 68); N Ta’u (M Cusack 50); S Boden (S Jenkins 70); R List (T Toke 60); D Smith (N Cochrane 60); G Kenworthy; B Griffiths; A Kettle; S Grainger
Otley: I Shuttleworth (T Whitaker 60); R Kitching; J Buchanan; K Dench; D Smith (S Parsons 45); A Monks (T Rhodes 45), D McCormack; S Trethewey (R Wederall 52); J Parkes (W Kay 64); K Fullman; P Williams; H Parr; M McComish; M Lewis; M Stockdale (R Baldwin 45)
Tries: C Hughes, Kettle, Warnock, Griffiths, Carter, Toke
Cons: Warnock (3)
Tries: McCormack, Kitching
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