Photo Brian Tempest: Brett Beukeboom new club captain
The Cornish Pirates annual ‘Meet the Players’ event, held at the Mennaye Field on Tuesday, once again proved popular, reports Phil Westren. Also, during the evening, the name of Cornish Pirates’ Canadian international lock forward Brett Beukeboom was announced as club captain for the coming season.
PA announcer Phil Westren welcomed all present and following a brief but competitive training game against the Pirates Amateurs the Cornish Pirates squad then lined up in front of the main grandstand where ten new faces were introduced. They comprised signings Jake Ashby, Nodar Cheishvili, Danny Cutmore, Maliq Holden, Rory Parata, Callum Patterson, Jordan Payne, Javier Rojas Alvarez, Alex Schwarz, and Robin Wedlake. Added to this group, seven players to be dual-registered with Exeter Chiefs were also announced. They were Josh Caulfield, Jake Clemson, Luke Flack, Billy Keast, James McRae, Harvey Skinner, and Harry Strong.
Photo Brian Tempest: Cornish Pirates in friendly action against Pirates Amateurs
On behalf of the coaches Alan Paver then addressed the crowd, firstly thanking the Pirates Amateurs and wishing them a good season and next speaking about the Cornish Pirates. He mentioned that new signings are bedding in well, plus spoke of hopes for the season ahead, where an aim will be to have a “foot on the pedal right from the start” and “to go one better than last season” – the Pirates finished fourth.
As everyone then gathered in the clubhouse to mingle and meet informally, the tone of the evening was very much positive, with recent good news about the stadium also providing an obvious boost.
London Cornish RFC is delighted to confirm the following coaching team for season 2018-19:
HEAD COACH – CORNE DU RAND
Corne has enjoyed a fine coaching career, encompassing spells at both Ealing RFC and London Scottish RFC in the Championship, from whom he joins LCRFC. He is an RFU Level 3 Qualified Coach who specialises in developing players skills, and takes control with immediate effect. Corne comments “I am delighted to have been offered this opportunity to work with such a unique club. I am hugely impressed by the strong ethos that the club has maintained and the ambitions within the club to see what is achievable without moving away from what makes the club unique. I am looking forward to working with the coaching and management team assembled by Dickon, all the players, along with the new recruits, as well as meeting all everyone involved with the club – there is plenty to do in limited time and it’s an exciting opportunity to develop the club further.”
ASSISTANT COACH – DAN LEO 3 World Cups, 39 caps for Samoa, a Heineken Cup, Premiership and most importantly a London 2 South-West Winner, Dan returns after a season with Bishops Stortford in National 1 because London 1 South is a gap in his rugby coaching CV! He had a massive impact both on and off the pitch in his previous spell here and, as he is moving back south for family reasons, is expecting to be able to bring the same innovative approach to coaching this time around! Dan adds “After a successful 2016-17 season at LCRFC when we went unbeaten, it’s great to be returning to a club I know well. The club is strongly accustomed to winning and I look forward to the challenge of working with Corne and Paul in establishing Cornish as a top 4 side in London 1 South, and really kicking on as one of the best amateur clubs in England.”
2s COACH – PAUL SPIVEY Paul joins after a 13 year semi-pro career with the likes of Hull Ionians, Moseley, London Scottish, Ealing and Rosslyn Park, from whom he moves to us. He played for 6 seasons in the Championship, and though he has coached at youth level, is starting out on his adult coaching journey. He has already observed pre season training and will be a great addition to the team.
DoR Dickon Moon adds “I am sure you will agree with me that this represents a very exciting coaching team with which to work, and all are joining because the 1 night a week training, low travel element of a Level 6 club fits neatly around their other commitments. I am still on the hunt for a Backs Coach, probably seeking their first coaching role, but we have enough cover with the experience we have above if we are not successful in landing one. I also hope that the calibre of this coaching team will more players keen to develop their games join LCRFC, and Cornish lads moving up here or at other clubs in the area come home to Cornish!”
The Cornish Pirates are in buoyant mood ahead of the 2018/19 season, and for good reason, reports Phil Westren from the Mennaye.
For the team and its supporters there is much to look forward to as they approach a new campaign with an already gifted squad boosted still further by the arrival of quality new signings.
August will be busy with, following a ‘Meet the Players’ night scheduled for Tuesday 7th August, three pre-season fixtures lined up. Included is the one much anticipated home encounter against Exeter Chiefs, to be played on Friday 17th August (ko 7.30pm).
As for the Greene King IPA Championship, the Cornish Pirates get underway with two home games. First up, on Sunday 2nd September, will be Doncaster Knights, whilst former old rivals Coventry – ambitious and returning to the level as last season’s Champions of National One – visit on the 9th September. Both matches kick-off at 2.30pm.
Having finished an impressive 4th in the Greene King IPA Championship last season, with their strengthened squad the Cornish Pirates will be keen to perform well and get their league season off to an encouraging start. There is also a new Championship Cup competition that replaces the British & Irish Cup.
Considering the above, and not forgetting the planned Stadium for Cornwall – ‘Sportva Kernow’ – during next season and beyond there clearly is much to whet the sporting appetite in Cornwall.
Commenting first on pre-season training, Cornish Pirates’ coach Alan Paver has said:
“We have had to battle with the extreme weather but it has gone very well, helped by having decent numbers right from the start. It is also felt we are much further on than where we were last year and considerably further forward than we were two years ago.”
“With the squad bolstered and the guys coming in nice and early, everyone has bedded in and integrated well. Our very good signings will give us more scope when inevitable injuries hit, and we also feel that the new arrivals will give value both on the pitch and as good men off it. Already, once again, a good team spirit has developed.”
“For the immediate future and moving forward these are exciting times. The stadium is now on the horizon and will be a great facility for the county and our squad reflect that ambition.
“As for the forthcoming campaign, we understand the rigours of a tough league, with nothing a ‘given’. Everyone is ambitious, however with our excellent support we will look to hit the ground running and make a push to try and finish at least as high as last season.
“There will always be tricky waters to at times negotiate, but we will navigate through them and make sure that we continue to get stronger. The club and Dicky Evans have provided us with a foundation to do that and our eye is very much on the future and gaining momentum.”
Also looking to the future with a mix of confidence and excitement, the club’s COO, Robin James, has commented:
”It’s an exciting time to be part of the Cornish Pirates, on and off the field, seeing all the players and coaches’ meticulous preparation into pre-season training has been inspiring to observe and this effort will not go without its rewards.
“We have also had excellent engagement with all our sponsors and we thank them for their continued support and loyalty, without them we wouldn’t have a team on the pitch.
Photo by Brian Tempest. Robin James Chief Operating Officer
Speaking with reference to the Stadium for Cornwall, Robin said:
“It has been very encouraging to see all the progress we have made with the new stadium.
“Tim Wood our stadium project manager is working well with all parties and with the site investigation due to start shortly we are looking for significant progress on the project. Once the site investigation is complete, Arup the civil works consultants can finalise the earthworks design and cut and fill requirements for the foundations.
“Our sincere thanks are expressed to all involved for progressing matters, with the business plan submitted on time to the Government and with ongoing meetings with Cornwall County Council and all the various stakeholders dotting the i’s and crossing the t’s.
“Complex projects like this take time and never move as fast as everyone would like, but I have no doubt we are on track for there is a commitment and determination from all concerned to get this over the line as quickly as we can.”
Photo: John Blackburn at front of the lineout for Penryn against London Welsh 1973
John Blackburn, who sadly passed away this week aged 79, was in his heyday one of the most renowned lock forwards playing in Cornwall during the sixties and early seventies, forming a a second row partnership with Colin “Knocker” Kneebone
He looked the part of “Cheyenne”, a nickname taken from the cowboy TV character of the time Cheyenne Bodie with his long hair and headband and hands like shovels. He played in a mighty Penryn side that dominated south west rugby during that period and featured in Penryn’s great run in the National Knock Out Cup, notably against Coventry and London Welsh against whom he captained the Borough.
Exeter were dispatched on that run to the last eight in 1972 before Penryn lost to a David Duckham inspired Coventry 28-4 at a muddy Memorial Ground, whilst the following year London Welsh, boasting several British Lions from 1971 won 19-6 at the same stage. Both games were played to a capacity gate of some 5,000.
John also featured in some prestigious games at Penryn notably against the 1971 British Lions, Public School Wanderers International XV and a memorable win against the famed Harlequins.
John played 20 times for Cornwall, making his debut in a friendly game against Oxfordshire at Falmouth, which Cornwall won 22-5. His County Championship debut came at Redruth in October 1969 against Gloucestershire in a game lost 9-12.
He did feature in both games played against the French that season, the 11- all draw in Clermont Ferrand against a French Selection and the narrow 13-14 defeat to France B at Redruth.
Former Penryn No.8 Tim Nicholls said of his former team-mate “John was a physically powerful force and gave his all for Penryn over many seasons, including as captain. A tough, uncompromising figure on the field, and a true character off it, John was always supported by his wife Pat and our thoughts and most sincere condolences to her and the family at this time. The word legend can truly be used for “Cheyenne”. His friends at the Borough and elsewhere will raise a glass in his memory at this sad time. ‘
John’s funeral will be held at St. Mylor Church (Mylor Dockyard) on Friday 27th July @ 3:30 p.m.
Everybody connected with Trelawny’s Army are saddened to learn of the passing of our great friend and valued committee member Ewart White who sadly passed away yesterday following a short illness.
Ewart was rightly regarded as a stalwart of Cornish rugby, he was county team secretary for over twenty years, also a valued team secretary at Camborne RFC for even longer.
He, with others, helped enormously foster links between TASC and the Cornwall RFU, calling us “Cornwall’s 16th man”.
Ewart’s phone was at times the red-hottest in Cornwall as he phoned players to tell them they had been selected to play rugby for Cornwall. What a joy that must have been to both parties.
The high esteem that he was held in by the players he came to know is illustrated by the many comments on social media over the past few hours expressing their sadness but also huge respect they held for him as a man and friend.
His words of encouragement to young players playing for Cornwall were ones that were never forgotten. He looked after “his boys”.
Ewart was a gentleman, a Camborne man and a Cornishman. He will be greatly missed by all who knew him.
Trelawny’s Army wishes to express it’s deepest and most sincerest condolences to Margaret and the rest of the family at this sad time.
Please be advised Ewart’s funeral will take place on Friday 29th June at 11 am at Camborne Wesley Church, Chapel Street, TR14 8EG.
Cornwall selectors rang the changes ahead of county side’s final fixture for this season with a view to looking at players ahead of next season’s campaign; however they were also hit by some late withdrawals which meant Cornwall fielding a side with not one Redruth player in the match day squad!
Sadly, for Cornwall the gulf in the playing standard showed with Cornwall suffering their biggest defeat for many years, a result that will shock many but in reality others feared.
Huge credit to those players who came in at the last minute to wear the shirt, indeed to the whole side for never giving up playing until the final whistle.
Cornwall ended the campaign bottom of their group but as relegation is considered over two seasons, the 15 points they amassed in 2017 saved their skins, however in 2019 they will start another 2 year cycle of results. Surrey appear to be the unlucky side to drop having been deducted points for fielding an ineligible player against Cornwall.
Cornwall’s skipper Jake Murphy was philosophical in defeat. “Credit to our lads for turning out today, it’s not been easy putting a side together this week. To a man they gave their all but sadly the gulf was evident today when you are up against National League 1 & 2 players. I shall think over my own situation over the summer as to whether I should carry on next season, maybe it’s time for the youngsters to step up now and take Cornwall on a new adventure.”
As in their previous two games Cornwall conceded an early try from a catch-and-drive when Herts hooker Steff Jones snuck over from the drive, fly-half Sean Taylor kicked the conversion and the home side were up and running.
Cornwall then lost lock Jack Heazelton to injury giving Penryn’s Adam Hughes an early chance to impress.
Cornwall enjoyed good possession for large parts of the first half but sadly committed too many errors. Skipper Jake Murphy and fellow centre Jon Dawe caught the eye in mid-field as did forwards Jon Drew and George Jones with their drives.
Hertfordshire made the most of their field position when it came scoring two tries in the final ten minutes of the first half through lock Harry Green and right on the half-time whistle through No.8 Chris West, Taylor converted the former for a 19-0 half-time advantage to Hertfordshire.
In the second half Cornwall again had good periods but sadly they couldn’t capitalise as the big Hertfordshire pack took charge allied to the greater fitness of National League players.
Saltash’s Lewis Wells looked lively, whilst lock Ben Hilton was a nuisance in the rucks and mauls.
Hertfordshire’s bonus point try came from a forward drive replacement hooker Ollie Walker getting the try with the excellent Taylor again adding the extras.
Tries came at regular intervals as the final quarter wore on through scrum-half Ben Creasey centre James Rea, replacement wing Luke Barber, flanker Nick Radley bringing up the eight tries. Taylor added a further couple of conversions to complete the scoring in an emphatic win, which coupled with Surrey’s win over Gloucestershire sees the men in green at Twickenham next Sunday to face Lancashire in the final.
Cornwall will be bitterly disappointed not to have got a score, whilst the coaches and selectors will have much to ponder on how to turn Cornwall’s fortunes around next season.
HERTFORDSHIRE: S Taylor (Hertford), E Byfield (Tring), J Rea (Bishop’s Stortford), R Streets (Hertford), S Barnes (Tring), D Watt (Old Albanian), T Banks (Bishop’s Stortford, capt); L Castiglione, S Jones (both Hertford), K Garside (Amptill), R Conquest (Cambridge), H Green, N Radley, N Stevens (all Tring), C West (Old Albanian).
Replacements: O Walker (Old Albanian), T McCrone (Bishop’s Stortford), D Archer, J Elston, B Creasey (all Hertford), J Scantlebury (Bishop’s Stortford), L Barber (Harpenden).
CORNWALL: M Vague (Penryn), W Morton (Saltash), S Hitchens (Penryn), J Dawe, D Pearce (both Launceston), J Murphy (Barnstaple, capt), T Peacock (Camborne); A Zacharovs (Camborne), M Ballard (Wadebridge Camels), J Drew (Camborne), B Hilton (Barnstaple), J Heazelton (Truro), L Wells (Saltash), G Jones (Penryn), L Duke (Launceston).
Replacements: T-L Southworth, (Camborne), Z Cinnamond (Launceston), A Hodges (Bude), O Seagrove (Truro), A Hughes (Penryn), N Nash (Brixham), R McAtee (Camborne).
Photo: Ben Hilton returns to Cornwall’s boiler house
By Bill Hooper
Due to unavailability and other circumstances, Cornwall’s selectors have picked a largely experimental side to face Hertfordshire at Bishop’s Stortford on Saturday 3 pm.
There are nine changes in the starting XV from the side that played against Devon at Camborne last week and just four players in the squad that faced Hertfordshire at Camborne last season. The big surprise is the omission of Matt Shepherd who would have been available this week, but sadly is another unavailable player.
In the backs, Will Morton (Saltash) comes in for the unavailable Tom Notman, whilst Richie Kevern comes off the bench into centre in place of the injured Duncan Tout.
Dave Mankee forms a club partnership at half back with Taron Peacock as he did last week when coming on for the injured Fraser Honey.
The forwards see a major shake-up, Jess Tompsett starts alongside Matt Ballard and Jon Drew, whilst in the second row there is a new partnership as former county captain Ben Hilton teams up with Truro’s Jack Heazelton in place of the Redruth duo of Edd Pascoe and Luke Hattam.
In the back row, a second Saltash player comes in Lewis Wells replacing BJ Chapman, whilst Launceston skipper Lloyd Duke comes in for Grant Randlesome at No.8.
Both Andrius Zacharovas and Tommy-Lee Southworth drop to the bench with a raft of new names coming in Zac Cinnamond, Angus Hodges, Adam Hughes, Sam Hitchens and Dan Pearce
15 Mitch Vague (Penryn)
14 Will Morton (Saltash)
13 Jake Murphy [Capt.] (Barnstaple)
12 Richard Kevern (Redruth)
11 Jon Dawe (Launceston)
10 David Mankee (Camborne)
9 Taron Peacock (Camborne)
1 Jess Tompsett (Redruth)
2 Matt Ballard (Wadebridge Camels)
3 Jon Drew (Camborne)
4 Ben Hilton (Barnstaple)
5 Jack Heazelton (Truro)
6 Lewis Wells (Saltash)
7 George Jones (Penryn)
8 Lloyd Duke Launceston)
16 Tommy Lee Southworth (Camborne)
17 Andrius Zacharovas (Camborne)
18 Zac Cinnamond (Launceston)
19 Angus Hodges (Bude)
20 Sam Hitchens (Penryn)
21 Adam Hughes (Penryn)
22 Dan Pearce (Launceston)
Head Coach: Graham Dawe
Assistant Coaches: Marek Churcher & Rhodri McAtee
Hertfordshire have announced their side for the annual clash in the Bill Beaumont Cup against Cornwall, who they host this Saturday, 19th May at Bishop Stortford RFC. Kick off is 3pm.
Hertfordshire: Sean Taylor (Hertford); Elliott Byfield (Tring), James Rea (Bishop Stortford), Richard Streets (Hertford), Sam Barnes (Tring); Dan Watt (Old Albanian), Tom Banks (Bishop Stortford) – Captain, Louis Castiglione (Hertford), Steff Jones (Hertford), Karl Garside (Ampthill), Rob Conquest (Cambridge), Harry Green (Tring), Nick Radley (Tring), Nick Stevens (Old Albanian), Chris West (Old Albanian)
Replacements: Ollie Walliker (Old Albanian), Tom McCrone (Bishop’s Stortford), Dave Archer (Hertford), Jack Elston (Hertford), Ben Creasey (Hertford), Jack Scantlebury (Bishop’s Stortford), Luke Barber (Harpenden)
Photo Colin Hatch: Players l-r Jake Penprase, Luke Barnes, James Tucker, Declan Matthews & Torin Clarke.
Five Cornwall U.20 players took place in the inter-divisional games at Derby last weekend. The South West played the Midlands and lost, however Declan Matthews scored a try for the South West. Sadly Torin Clarke was injured verry early in the game. A sixth player selected Jack Hodge was unable to attend the weekend.
At the conclusion of the two games, the North played London and South East, the touring squad to Georgia was selected, sadly none of our lads made the cut, but congratulations for getting so far.
Photo Marina Trevarton: Cornwall Ladies on the attack
On Sunday, Cornwall Ladies completed their program in this season’s Gill Burns Cup Division 2 when they went down at Polson Bridge to Hertfordshire Ladies 48-10. Well done to all the squad as this was their first season competing in the competition.