- Doncaster bounce back to professional rugby after one season in SSE National League 1
- Rosslyn Park claim maximum points in final weekend
Photo: RFU Archive
Cheered on by a large band of travelling supporters in south-east London, Doncaster Knights secured the National League One title and promotion back to the Greene King Championship with a final-day 38-20 victory against Blackheath.
As expected, “Club” proved difficult opponents and they were only two points adrift of the league leaders with half an hour of the contest to go. But tries from Bevon Armitage and Tyson Lewis – the division’s top try scorer – and a penalty try prevented the Knights falling at the final hurdle.
Long-time title rivals Rosslyn Park also claimed maximum points from their final fixture after scoring eight tries – six of them converted by fly half Scott Snedden – to thump Cinderford, 52-17. The Foresters’ lingering relegation worries are over, though, after Henley were held to a 14-14 draw at Tynedale. The Hawks return to National Two South as a result of the stalemate in Corbridge.
Henley, Hull and Worthing drop to National League Two
Henley are relegated along with Hull Ionians and Worthing, whose fate was sealed long before the final weekend. Ionians were crushed 67-14 by rampant Coventry, centre Rob Knox and back-rower Jacques Le Roux both grabbing hat-tricks for the Midlands side, who finished the season in third, while Cliffie Hodgson kicked 17 points to take his record-breaking tally for the season to an incredible 372 points.
In an entertaining game of 11 tries and 72 points, Worthing went down to a narrow home defeat at the hands of Wharfedale. Raiders wing Alex Nielsen scored a hat-trick of tries but could not prevent his side bowing out on a losing note.
Fylde produced an eight-try, 50-30 demolition of Old Albanian to finish fourth ahead of Esher, who scored four first-half tries to set up a 31-17 win over Richmond. Even so, Richmond finished the season one place (7th) and four points better off than in 2012/13.
Loughborough Students made certain of their National One status with a 29-10 win over Blaydon. Fly half Alex Davies scored a try and kicked nine points.