All Square at a packed Rec


By Bill Hooper, at the Recreation Ground.

The much anticipated Cornish Derby ended with honours even in front of large festive crowd that filled all sides of this famous old ground.

A special day for both Redruth’s Dean Bonds playing his 200th game, and Camborne’s Tommy-Lee  Southworth racking up his 150th game for the Cherry & Whites. Both deserved the applause they received as they entered the field.

After the game both coaches felt the result was fair, however each felt that their side could have won.

Redruth’s head coach Richie Kevern said. “I am very proud of my team, I asked for a big performance and they certainly delivered. We started so well and dominated the game during the first quarter, we got two early tries but we needed a third try before the break to put the pressure on Camborne, instead they pulled back a try and that gave them momentum  going into the second half. We showed character to come back to draw the game.”

Camborne’s Director of Rugby Steve Larkins was equally pleased with Camborne’s performance. He said. “It was a fair result, however we felt we let slip a chance towards the end, the lads felt a little flat in the post match huddle. What a marvellous spectacle from both sides in front of another big crowd who got their monies worth today.”

What followed was high drama, the like of which a new generation of rugby followers had never seen from a Mining Division League Derby.

Both sides went at each other hammer & tong from the off, with crunching tackles that made you wince.

Bonds, on his special day, was playing like a man possessed popping up everywhere tackling every Cherry & White in sight.

It was the forwards that set up the opening try for the Reds with prop Tommy Phillips powering over after a series of pick & go’s. Fly-half Rhys Brownfield added the conversion.

Redruth domination continued as they pushed Camborne back towards their line with centre Jamin Hoffman slicing through the cover to dot down. The Redruth crowd roared their approval.

As expected centre Josh Matavesi started to influence the Camborne back play, whilst lock Adam Hughes started to punch holes in the Redruth defence.

Wing Harry Larkins bored down on Hellfire corner only to be denied by that man Bonds who dislodged the ball in the covering tackle.

Just before the break Camborne got their reward when flanker Jordan Nicholls went over following great play from Matavesi and fellow centre Nico De Battista, full back Aaron Simmonds adding the extras, for 12-7 at the turn. The Camborne faithful had something to cheer.

Camborne maintained their momentum, skipper Jordan Rose and Hughes made space for flanker Jago Sheppard out wide to score in the corner and tie the scores early doors second half. More excitement from the Camborne end with their flags waving hard, it was all to play for.

The Reds pushed hard but the Cherry & White defence held firm. Redruth had a player yellow carded and from a tap and go near the Red’s line top try-scorer hooker Ben Priddey was driven over with Simmonds converting. Cue Camborne Hill.

With time running out Redruth battled away in frenetic finale, it was Camborne’s turn to have a man in the bin. “Cometh the hour, cometh the man” as a well known former Cornish rugby reporter often said, the Red pack having the final word when prop Tyler Gendall was driven over under the sticks to huge cheers from a packed Hellfire corner. Brownfield tied the scores to make it a good Christmas for all, until Boxing Day!

REDRUTH: Beckerleg, Levick, Hoffman, James, Bonds, Brownfield, Tanswell, Phillips, Pritchard, Williams, Hattam, Pascoe, Fox, King, Wickham.

Replacements: Barnes, Gendall, Hocking, Stevens, Thomas.

CAMBORNE: Simmonds, Larkins, Gilbert, Matavesi, Ducker, De Battista, Jolly, Southworth, Priddey, Drew, Heazelton, Hughes, Sheppard, Nicholls, Rose.

Replacements: Rodman, Prowse, Fuca, Edson, Kessell.

Referee: Neil Sweeney (RFU)

Crowd: 2,850

Posted in Bill's Blog

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