14th February 2020, 13:30 | league_1
Betfred League 1 returns this weekend with a solitary fixture between North Wales Crusaders and Doncaster on Sunday afternoon.
The majority of opening round fixtures have had to be re-scheduled due to Coral Challenge Cup ties involving League 1 teams now being played this weekend following a number of postponements due to Storm Ciara.
However, North Wales and Doncaster managed to fulfil their Round Three fixtures last weekend with both clubs progressing to the 4th Round.
North Wales Crusaders earned a comfortable 6-64 victory over National Conference League Premier Division side Rochdale Mayfield – in a game which was shown live on BBC Sport. Second-rower Gav Rodden stole the show crossing for four tries in an impressive performance.
It wasn’t as easy for Doncaster who narrowly edged out NCL Division One side Thornhill Trojans 20-24. Aaron Ollett, Kieran Cross, Sam Doherty and Watson Boas were the Dons’ try-scorers, with Boas’ try proving the difference between the sides.
Richard Horne’s side will be looking to improve on their 2019 campaign which saw them make the Betfred League 1 play-offs but fall to eventual winners Oldham. The Dons finished last season in 4th, winning 12 of their 20 league fixtures.
They will be amongst the favourites for promotion in 2020 with some excellent attacking options in their side including former Man of Steel Rangi Chase, Papua New Guinea international Watson Boas and League 1 stalwart Matty Beharrell.
As for North Wales, 2019 was a mixed season for the Crusaders who started the season slowly but did manage nine victories which saw them miss out on the final play-off spot by three points.
North Wales will be looking to make their Wrexham home a fortress in 2020 and go one further and make this year’s play-offs while Doncaster will have their eyes set firmly on promotion.