Visit to Bedford puts struggling Knights in positive frame of mind

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Relegation-threatened Doncaster Knights will remind themselves of their last game with Bedford Blues before they reacquaint themselves today.

The Championship’s bottom club may have lost out 22-21 at Castle Park back in November.

But their more illustrious opponents needed every piece of fortune to go their way, requiring a last-gasp conversion and it is a timely reminder of the small deciding margins in this division.

Four months on, bottom-placed Doncaster need some of their own good luck, sitting six points adrift of Jersey with just four games to go in their bid for survival. However, they are bolstered this afternoon by the return of influential ex-Bedford fly-half Jamie Lennard and remain confident enough in their powers of recovery.

They will look, too, to Bedford’s own vulnerability, consecutive losses against Bristol and Newcastle threatening their hosts’ top-four play-off place.

Doncaster hooker Rhys Buckley said: “We were really hard done by in that reverse fixture.

“We’ve had two weeks to work on things since our last game, though, and we think we can have a real go at Bedford.

“They are one of the teams that we have had a good record against in recent years.

“I think the style of rugby we try and play should suit us against Bedford; it didn’t quite come off against Rotherham last time, but hopefully it will this weekend.”

Tighthead prop Thomas Francis makes a timely return after missing the last three games through injury, while Andy Brown partners him on the other side in the absence of sidelined Tom Davies,

Bedford backs coach Paul Larkin said: “Games against Doncaster are never easy and we were extremely lucky to pick up the win at Castle Park back in November with the last kick of the game. They are in a precarious league position and we know they will be doing everything possible to pick up the win.”