Former England winger Semesa Rokoduguni set to sign with Championship club - Ruck

Former England winger Semesa Rokoduguni set to sign with Championship club

Doncaster Knights are preparing to re-enter the transfer market, targeting veterans Semesa Rokoduguni and Logovi’i Mulipola for high-profile signings, according to Rugby.

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Rokoduguni, once a top winger in the Gallagher Premiership for Bath, saw his performance decline due to injuries toward the end of his ten-year tenure at The Rec.

Reliable sources suggest that both Rokoduguni and former England, Saracens, and Leicester prop Mulipola are on their way to Doncaster.

The Knights have recently added Zach Kerr and George Wacokecoke from Newcastle Falcons to their roster.

Semesa Rokoduguni of Bath Rugby is tackled by Ioan Lloyd of Bristol Bears but dives for the line and goes over for a try during the Gallagher Premiership Rugby Match between Bath Rugby and Bristol Bears at the Recreation Ground on 5 March 2022. Photo: Tom Sandberg/PPAUK

Earlier this year, Doncaster was cleared for Gallagher Premiership promotion, provided they finish the current season as Championship champions and then win a two-legged play-off against the Premiership’s bottom club, most likely Newcastle.

An RFU statement read: “Doncaster Knights has met the minimum standards criteria (MSC) and is therefore eligible for promotion to the Gallagher Premiership.

“Promotion is subject to coming top of the Championship league at the end of the season and then winning a two-legged home and away play-off against the club finishing bottom of the Gallagher Premiership Rugby table.

“Doncaster Knights was the only Championship club to apply to for a MSC audit and is therefore the only club eligible for promotion.”


In his remarkable lineup, Owens features three Welsh luminaries – Alun Wyn Jones, Shane Williams, and Gethin Jenkins. Additionally, he acknowledges the contributions of Lee Byrne, Dwayne Peel, and Leigh Halfpenny to the sport.

Notably, a striking facet of Owens’ chosen players is their collective leadership qualities, with the majority of the selected individuals having served as captains for their respective nations.

Fullback: Israel Folau (Australia)

Owens said: “For me, it’s nip and tuck between Halfpenny and Folau, next to nothing to choose between them. Leigh is brilliant because under the high ball and with his kicking at goal under pressure. He may not always break the line when running but puts his body on the line in defence and is a top-notch match-winner.

“But I go for Folau – only just, I should stress – because of his ability to seemingly beat his man every time he gets the ball in his hand. He’s such an exciting player and like Leigh he is one of the best under the high ball.

“It’s a toss of a coin for me… and it’s come down in Folau’s favour.”

Winger: Stuart Hogg (Scotland)

Owens said: “How can you fail to be impressed when watching Hogg play. He’s so exciting as he burst into that line and, of course, was named Six Nations player of the tournament.

“I know he’s a full-back for Scotland, but he is so quick and direct he could easily play on the wing. He reminds me a bit of Shane Williams with some of the things he does.

“When you see who is on the other wing in my team, you’ll see how they would work brilliantly in tandem.”

Fixtures for the Six Nations - Round 1

Outside-centre: Brian O’Driscoll (Ireland)

Owens said: “Not only is he one of the greatest centres in the history of rugby union but he’s a fantastic man off the field as well. O’Driscoll has been a wonderful ambassador for the sport and a real leader. He always respected referees and set the right example for others to follow.

“A legend of the game who conducted himself superbly, on and off the pitch.”

Inside-centre: Ma’a Nonu (New Zealand)

Owens said: “He’s another brilliant player and after every game, win or lose, he would come up and give me a hug. Ma’a has always found time at after-match functions or at breakfast if we’ve been staying at the same hotel to come over and have a chat.

“What a player, mind, too. One of the stalwarts of the New Zealand side for so many years.”

Winger: Shane Williams (Wales)

Owens said: “When people ask me who is the best player I have refereed it’s pretty much an impossible task to pick one because I’ve been lucky enough to take charge of so many greats.

“But if I’m pushed, I would pick Shane for what he achieved after coming from football at 17 or 18 years of age.

“He was in the mould of Gerald Davies in how he left defenders gasping for air as he beat them with those dazzling sidesteps. Nobody would fancy defending against a back three of Shane, Hogg and Folau, I can tell you that.”