Knight 'delight' for Best and Biljon

Rugby | Published:

JERSEY REDS’ director of rugby Harvey Biljon praised a ‘balanced, speed-focused’ performance in helping the Islanders overwhelm a strong Doncaster Knights side.

James Newey heading towards the try line at St Peter. The centre was one of five different scorers for Jersey Reds against Doncaster Knights Picture: DAVID FERGUSON (24023788)

The Reds started the match at a blistering pace on Friday night, running in four tries in 22 minutes to give them a lead which ultimately proved telling in their 41-21 success.

‘It was yet another balanced performance between the backs and forwards,’ said Biljon. ‘During the week we put a huge focus on speed with a view to moving that big Doncaster team around, and I think that paid dividends in the game with some excellent scores taken.’

Captain Jerry Sexton opened the scoring for the Reds in the fifth minute, as he pounced on a blocked kick.

‘I think the opportunist score from Jerry Sexton put us on the right track and gave us the confidence and momentum to really push the ball. We were also strong at the set-piece against a big side like that, which is something else we had worked on.

‘More importantly by getting those scores early we made Doncaster change their game plan because they had to play the ball, which gave us an opportunity – while they were potentially trying to force some passes we could capitalise on that.’

The icing on the cake came for the Reds after the game when they found out that rivals Bedford Blues and Cornish Pirates had both lost their fixtures, meaning that Biljon’s men climb to third in the Championship table.

‘We just want to enjoy tonight. Beyond that we can’t control what is going on in other games, but what we can do is work hard this week as we have a real test at Cornish Pirates next weekend.’

Reds centre Mark Best was a key man, with his grubber-kick creating James Newey’s try and his dominant tackles constantly a threat to Doncaster. He was rightly awarded man of the match – his first accolade in two years at the club.

He said: ‘I am delighted to get the award. It is the first time in two years but it seems there is a first time for everything, so I am absolutely delighted with it.’

Full reaction and match report in Monday's Final Whistle.

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