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Despite the attraction of the autumn internationals either live or on the box, there was still plenty of local rugby to enjoy over the weekend.

I took in a couple of games, Saturday at Redruth and then on Sunday down at the Mennaye for the Cornish Pirates match against the Bedford Blues.

Let’s start at the Mennaye in the Greene King IPA Championship, this being the first match to be held on a Sunday, though it has to be said that the original fixture list always had this as a Sunday afternoon kick-off.

It was always going to be interesting to compare the attendance with that of a Friday night, which so many had vehemently opposed. I for one am not too bothered, though Sunday’s are slightly preferable to me re work.

Naturally the jury will be out for a while yet, but the official attendance of 1,609 is only marginally better than that of a Friday night.

What it tends to confirm is that the continued economic squeeze is still having an effect, despite what the politicians try to tell us, and is likely to do so for some time yet especially in Cornwall where wages are sadly low and everyone is feeling the pinch!

On the field what more could you ask for, a tremendous game played in difficult conditions with the Pirates squeezing home by a score 16-13. Scrum-half Tom Kessell snipped another try with Kieran Hallett adding the conversion and three penalties. Bill Sobey’s report from the WMN in the link.

The only downside were the injuries picked up by lock James Sandford and prop Alan Paver, who it reported has a broken arm which will keep him out of tomorrow night’s Remembrance Day fixture at the Brickfields for the Barbarians against Combined Services kick-off 7-15 pm.

Thursday evening is date of the Emergency General Meeting to be held at Redruth’s club house for all paid up members. Membership cards will need to be produced on the door to gain entry.

On the field Redruth gave another Jekyll and Hyde performance, woeful in the first half, simply outstanding in the second to overturn a half-time deficit of 25-10 into a 38-28 win at full-time.

It was the third time this season that Phil Watters has refereed at the Rec this season and as on the previous two occasions it was a mixed performance on his part, which again left seasoned players in disbelief with certain interpretations of the rules!

My match report from today’s Western Morning News can be found in the link here.

Special mention for Sam Matavesi, who is on a four week loan period from Plymouth Albion with the Reds, the former Camborne player scored two tries on his debut in a red shirt!

The other game in National League 2 South saw a welcome win on the road for the Cornish All Blacks at Southend 17-14. It sounds like it was a tempestuous affair with cards being flourished left, right and centre! Poor old skipper Ben Hilton copped a red for a second yellow card offence! Tom Rawlings & Jamie Salter scored the tries with Kieron Lewitt kicking the rest of the points. Read Nigel Walrond’s match report from today’s WMN in the link.

In Tribute South West 1West, Camborne defeated Chard 23-17. Joe Parma, Alex Ducker and Rob Floyd scored the Cherry and White’s tries with Grant Thirlby kicking a conversion and two penalties.

St. Austell ran riot at Cullompton winning 50-18! Darren Pellow and Matt Shepherd each scored two tries with Hugh Noot, Ashley Taylor, Adam Kellow and Dan Pearce also crossing for scores. Shepherd converted five scores.

Defeat at home to Weston Hornets 19-15 capped a miserable week for Wadebridge Camels who have been deducted five points by the Cornwall RFU disciplinary panel. Mark Grubb scored their only try with Josh Taylor kicking three penalties for a losing bonus point.

In Tribute Western Counties West, Penryn were the only Cornish side to taste success as they won 26-8 at Wellington. Colin Campbell and Dan Booth scored the Borough’s tries with Rob Banks kicking four penalties and two conversions.

Truro lost at high-flyers Burnham-on-Sea 20-10. Carl Ranscombe and Ashley Lawton scored unconverted tries for the City side.

St. Ives lost at leaders Ivybridge 27-11. Sam Heath got a try for the Hakes with Jacob Ninnes kicking a couple of penalties.

Bude lost at home to Teignmouth 30-20. James Comber (2) and Freddie Saxton scored the seasiders’ tries with Ollie Denford kicking a conversion and penalty.

Up in London 2 SW, London Cornish notched up another good win this time at Effingham & Leatherhead 28-22. Simon Brading (2), Tom Lloyd and Ciaran Acford scored the exiles’ tries with Tom Carter kicking two penalties and a conversion.

In Tribute Cornwall and Devon League; Saltash had a fine win against Falmouth at the Rec 33-28. Steve Hillman, Sean Crawford, Jason Carroll and Max Venables all scored tries for the Ashes, whilst Venables’ boot accounted for the rest of the points.

For the defeated Eagles, Justin Irons, Tony Whittle and Ollie Church all crossed the whitewash with Irons kicking thirteen points.

Veor beat Pirates Amateurs at Wheal Gerry 29-10. Try scorers were Shovel (2), Stone, Lancaster and a Penalty-try, whilst Mankee kicked a couple of conversions. At present no details of the Ams point scorers.

Hayle were defeated at home by Exeter Uni 34-17. Alex Thornton and Scott Harvey scored tries for the Lions with Dan Magee kicking the other points.

Injury strapped Newquay Hornets were no match for OPM’s as they lost 32-10 at the Sportscentre. Connor Riley and Nick Parnell scored the Hornets’ tries.

In Tribute Cornwall 1, Liskeard-Looe kept their un-beaten record with a 38-8 win at Lux Park against Helston.

Bodmin were held to a 17 all draw at St. Agnes, whilst Perranporth won 30-17 at Stithians.

School of Mines won at home against Roseland 33-0.

In Tribute Cornwall 2, Illogan Park continue to lead the way after a 74-5 win over Lankelly-Fowey.

Second place St. Just defeated Redruth Albany 29-10 and third place Camelford beat St. Day 26-3.

Congratulations to all the Cornwall 18 group lads who have been selected for the initial group of players for the SW Division. My understanding is eleven players are in the thirty-five man squad. The squad will eventually be trimmed to twenty-two in a couple of weeks time.

There was one Cornish based player involved in this weekend’s internationals; Cornish Pirates’ Matt Evans played full back for Canada in their 19-15 defeat to Georgia in Tbilisi.

Posted in Bill's Blog


Top of the bill this week must be our Cornwall 18 group who in defeating Buckinghamshire 19-8 in Bristol on Sunday have clinched the south west group title.

The win against Bucks made it a clean sweep for our boys following their wins against Somerset 34-0, Devon at Okehampton 26-18 and Dorset & Wilts again in Bristol last weekend 10-3.

Dan Rutter, Tommy Phillips and Locryn Williams are just three of the youngsters who have featured in the side this season.

Congratulations and Proper Job to the whole squad who are coached by Andy Hawken, Stewart Whitworth and Mark Pullen.

Hopefully a good number of our boys will be in the frame when the South west divisional squad is picked.

Friday night saw the final evening floodlight game at the Mennaye before home games for the Cornish Pirates revert back to Sunday afternoons, subject of course to any demands from SKY TV as head coach Ian Davies dryly remarked in the match day program!

London Scottish were the visitors on Friday night and 1,449 people turned out to witness a close game which the Cornish Pirates won 16-8.
Two tries for scrum half Tom Kessell helped the Pirates to their win along with a brace of penalties from fly-half Kieran Hallett. Kieran Goss almost got a third try only to be hauled down just short.

There was a good number of Redruth supporters at the game keen to catch up with two of their former stars at the Reds; PJ Gidlow and Mark Bright.

Bedford Blues will be at the Mennaye next Sunday, Remembrance Sunday, when hopefully the crowd will be higher than the gates experienced on a Friday night. If it is not, then the head scratching will intensify!

A disappointing weekend for our two National League 2 South sides. Redruth were held to a 12 all draw at the Recreation Ground by visitors Shelford.

Trailing 7-0 at the break the Reds clawed their way into a 12-7 lead thanks to a converted penalty-try from Brett Rule and a poacher’s try from Rhodri McAtee.

However, the Reds looked off colour all afternoon and they were forced to concede the draw as Shelford scored an un-converted try in time added on.

Of equal concern for the Reds with all the speculation going on about off the field affairs, was the official figure for the gate, just 461!

The Cornish All Blacks suffered another big defeat on the road, this time at bottom of the table London Irish Wild Geese 45-22!
At half-time the All Blacks had just a Kieron Lewitt penalty to show as they trailed 40-3.

There was a reaction after the break but the game was already long gone. Tries were scored by Kyle Moyle, Lewis Webb and Mike Rawlings with Lewitt and Moyle each adding a conversion.

Tribute South West 1 West saw a fantastic Cornish Derby between St. Austell and Camborne played in front of a crowd nearing 800 at Tregorrick Park. Saints edged the game 34-27 with centre Darren Pellow scoring a hat-trick of tries, Ian Venner bagging a brace and Paul Winterbottom also crossing. Matt Shepherd chipped in with a couple of conversions.

Camborne came away with a couple of points with tries from Sam Bartle James Goldsworthy (2) and Joe Parma ensuring a try-scoring point to go along with a losing one. Dave Mankee kicked a couple of conversions and a penalty.

Wadebridge Camels picked up a good win at Sidmouth 23-16. Dom Hawkey (2) and Matt Ballard scored the Camels’ tries whilst Josh Taylor kicked a conversion and two penalties.

In Tribute Western Counties West, there was three wins from the four games involving Cornish sides.

Truro travelled to Torquay Athletic and travelled back to Cornwall with a 36-19 win.

Tries for Truro were scored by Carl Ranscombe (2), Ben Teasdale (2), Brett Johnson and Luke Tidball. Daryl Riches and Jake Champion (2) added conversions.

Bude did their chances of avoiding relegation a power of good winning 15-12 at Tavistock. Adam Black (2) and James Comber scored un-converted tries.

St. Ives also helped their cause at the wrong end of the table defeating Devonport Services 17-14 at Alexandra Road. Neil Stanlieck and Graham Corin scored the Hakes’ tries which were both converted by Jacob Ninnis who also kicked a penalty.

Ivybridge won at Penryn 29 – 10 to go to the top of the table. Taron Peacock and Dave Pascoe scored tries for the Borough.

In London 2 SW, London Cornish trailed 14-10 at Weybridge Vandals at half-time before scoring 25 unanswered second half points to win 35-14.
Sam Rae (2), Matthew Hakes, Richard Skinnard and Sam Williams all scored tries, whilst Tom Carter kicked a further ten points. The win lifts the exiles up to fourth.

In Tribute Cornwall & Devon League, Falmouth will feel a touch unlucky losing at Exeter University 24-23 having led 23-12!
Ashley Searle (2) and Sam Burke scored tries whilst Justin Irons kicked the other points.

Pirates Amateurs got their first league win of the season at the Mennaye against Hayle 21-13.
Rhys Brownfield, Josh Oliver and Matt Nicholas scored tries for the Ams with Brownfield adding all three conversions.

For Hayle, Doug Arnell and Rob Cutter scored tries with Scott Harvey kicking a penalty.

Saltash played out an exciting draw with Crediton 38 all. Max Veneables late penalty earned the Ashes a draw. Venables, Morton, Cruikshanks, Hillman and Moriarty all scored tries with Venables kicking the remainder of his side’s points.

Newquay Hornets were well beaten at the Sportscentre by Withycombe 48-8. Brad Rossborough scored the Hornets only try with Sam Cullen kicking a penalty.

Old Plymothian & Mannamedian defeated Veor at Elburton 42-12. Ed Maddern got one of Veor’s two tries.

In Tribute Cornwall 1, Liskeard Looe took the honours in the top of the table clash at Bodmin’s Clifden Park winning 37-13.

St. Agnes won at Phileigh defeating Roseland 18-5, whilst Perranporth beat School of Mines 17-5 at Ponsmere. Stithians won a tight affair at Helston 8-0.

In Tribute Cornwall 2, Illogan Park won at Redruth Albany 75-0, Camelford beat Lankelly-Fowey 17-0 and St. Just won the battle of the Saints at St. Day 20-13.

Posted in Bill's Blog


London Welsh again showed why they are everyone’s favourites for a swift return to the Aviva Premiership with a comfortable defeat of the Cornish Pirates 41 – 6 at their Oxford base the Kassam Stadium.

All the Pirates had to show for the long trip were a couple of Kieran Hallett penalties.

They will look to bounce back to winning ways this Friday evening when they tackle visitors London Scottish at the Mennaye with a 7-45 pm kick-off.
Good news for former Cornish Pirate Blair Cowan – now with London Irish- who has been called up to the Scotland squad for the autumn internationals.

In National League 2 South it was normal service as the home side won and the away side lost!

The Cornish All Blacks did what Redruth couldn’t manage on the opening weekend of the season beat Cambridge.

Launceston came from behind to defeat their visitors 23-17 with a brace of tries from Sam Chapman and a third score from Lloyd Duke. Kieron Lewitt added eight points with the boot.

Redruth lost narrowly by just one point at Ding’s Crusaders 14-13, despite tries from Dean Bonds and Luke Jones along with a penalty kicked by Ashley Hosking.

Redruth now have back-to-back home games starting with Shelford this Saturday before entertaining London Irish Wild Geese on Saturday week.
In Tribute South West 1 West, Camborne defeated visitors North Petherton 24-10 to move up the table.

There was of course a minute’s silence prior to kick-off in memory of Bobby Tonkin who sadly passed away last week.

First half tries from Sam Bartle and a brace from lock Ben Kemp with a conversion from Dave Mankee saw the Cherry and Whites lead 17-3 having played into the wind.

Second half they pinned the visitors back in their own 22 for long periods before Dave Roberts finished off good work from Jason Jackson to secure the bonus point with Mankee adding his second conversion.

St. Austell enjoyed a good win on the road at Bridgwater & Albion 22-17. Ian Venner, Alex Welland and Jamie Holloway all scored tries with Andy Ashwin kicking the rest of the points.

This Saturday the mouth-watering Cornish Derby takes place at Tregorrick Park as St. Austell entertain Camborne, not one for the faint hearted!! Kick-off 2-30 pm.

Wadebridge Camels slumped to defeat at the Molesworth Field to Chard 21-17. A second penalty-try undid them two minutes from time.
Dan Lumb and Tom Rowe got tries for the Camels with Danny Thomas adding both conversions to Josh Taylor’s first half penalty.

In Tribute Western Counties West, there was only one Cornish side successful and that was Bude, who earned only their second win of the current campaign 17-12 against fellow strugglers St. Ives. James Comber, Silas Keeling and Ben Hancock scored tries with Harry Goodrun slotting a conversion.

For the defeated Hakes, Jamie Prisk and Aaron Bennett scored tries with Prisk adding a conversion.

Penryn lost 33-12 to Devonport Services. Despite a good start with a try from Alex Ducker, Services had too much pace outside for Borough to deal with. Jake Seviour grabbed a second try for Penryn which he also converted but by now Services were well in command.

Truro will be disappointed to have lost at St. Clements to Teignmouth 16-14.

Rikki Brandham scored one of Truro’s two tries with the second a penalty-try award. Both scores were converted by Ashley Richies.

Up in London 2 SW, London Cornish defeated Trojans 38-16, thanks in part to four tries from former Saltash player Richard Skinnard.

In Tribute Cornwall & Devon League, Falmouth condemned Pirates Amateurs to a seventh straight loss winning 18-13 at the Rec. Jacob Stephens and Sam Burke scored the Eagle’s tries with Justin Irons adding a conversion and two penalties.

For the Ams, Rhys Brownfield and Jack Nicholas scored tries with Brownfield kicking a penalty.

Newquay Hornets won the other derby defeating Veor 36-28 at Wheal Gerry. Tim Eustice (3), Harry Pendreich and Brad Rossbrough all scored tries with Sam Cullen adding four conversions and Connor Riley a drop-goal.

Hayle won 29-27 at home to OPM’s thanks to a last minute Martin Strick penalty. Scott Murray (3) and Rob Goodman bagged the Lions’ tries with Strick kicking three conversions before his penalty exploit.

In Tribute Cornwall 1, Bodmin maintain top spot with their fifth win from five games after defeating Roseland at Phileigh 38-7.
Liskeard & Looe had their game at Stithians postponed and are still unbeaten with four from four.

Both sides meet this Saturday at Clifden Park in an East Cornwall derby.

Perranporth won the battle of the surf cities defeating St. Agnes 34-21 at Ponsmere.

School of Mines had a good win over Helston at the Memorial Ground 24-5.

In Tribute Cornwall 2, leaders Illogan Park won 19-12 at nearest rivals St. Just.

Camelford won at Trewirgie against Redruth Albany 50-5, whilst St. Day defeated Lankelly-Fowey 41-10 to wipe out their minus league points deficit from not fulfilling their opening two fixtures.

Further congratulations to Cornwall 18 group who beat Dorset & Wilts in Bristol last Sunday to make it 3/3 wins this season.
They are back in Bristol this Sunday coming against Berkshire with South West selections in the offing!

Posted in Bill's Blog


Everyone is saying that it’s going to be even more important to win your home games in National League 2 South this season such is the tightness in playing abilities.

So it was good to see Redruth build on their good 2 points they got a Bournemouth last Saturday with a 26-14 win against Exmouth at the Rec.
The “Cockles” were making their first league visit to Redruth and they had plenty of familiar faces in their side, John Fabian, Richard Bolt and of course Richard Bright part of Cornwall’s side that got to Twickenham and all former Launceston players. Jon Hill on the bench who knows a thing or two about winning at Redruth.

Young Cornish prospect Luke Chapman, a star from last season’s England u.18’s and who has been part of the set up at Truro College now with Exeter Chiefs and on loan at Exmouth.

Once again it was the Redruth pack that laid the foundations of the win 26-14 and with tries from McAtee, Fuca, Penalty-try and the last gasp effort from Goodfellow the bonus point was collected too. Man-of-the-match Murray Westren kicked three excellent conversions and had a fine game.

Good to see Lewis Vinnicombe back and Owen Hambly as well. Whilst Westren continues to improve with each game, youngsters like Jake Rayment and Harry Baker are developing all the time.

Cracking try from Bright for the visitors showing us he hasn’t lost his try-scoring touch with the move back to his home town.
After a narrow win at home last week a 2 point loss for the Cornish All Blacks at Clifton 22-20.

Ben Hilton and Kieron Lewitt scored tries for the All Blacks with Lewitt kicking ten points.

In Tribute South West 1 West, game of the day had to be at Tregorrick as St. Austell took on Wadebridge Camels in an eagerly awaited derby in front of a crowd of 550.

There were nine tries in the game with the Saints helping themselves to six in a 38-15 win.

Scorers for the Saints were Ashley Taylor (2), Ian Venner, Alex Welland, Curtis Newberry and Matt Shepherd, with skipper Shepherd kicking four conversions.

For Wadebridge Harry Woodward (2) and Dan Lumb scored un-converted tries.

Camborne made the trip to bottom side Coney Hill and came away with a 27-15 win.

Despite scoring a first half try through Ryan Spargo and a penalty from Dave Mankee Camborne trailed at the break 12-8.

Despite the atrocious conditions Town ran in three further tries in the second half from Rob Floyd, Dave Roberts and Will Webster with Mankee adding a couple of conversions.

In Tribute Western Counties West, Penryn defeated Bude 41-18 at the Memorial Ground despite trailing 13-5 at the break. Winger Alex Ducker helped himself to three tries with other scores coming from Ollie Evans, Andrew Seviour and George Jones with Jake Seviour kicking four conversions and a penalty.

For Bude Adam Black and Richie Herzog scored tries with Harry Goodrun kicking two penalties and a conversion.
Truro had a good win at Tavistock 34-14. Theo Gayton (2), Chizz Gilbert, Matt Cross and Ashley Riches all scored tries for Truro with Riches adding a penalty and three conversions.

In Tribute Cornwall & Devon League, the local derby at the Sports centre went the way of the home side as Newquay Hornets defeated Hayle 20-17 despite trailing 17-7 at the break.

The Lions scored three first half tries through Rob Goodman, Martin Strick and Talan Daniels with Strick nudging over one conversion. Hornets got a first half try from Tim Eustice which Sam Cullen converted.

Second half Cullen kicked a penalty and then converted Connor Riley’s try to tie up the scores before stepping up to kick the winning penalty two minutes from time.

Falmouth drew 18 all at OPM’s. Toby Mears and Simon Bailey scored tries for the Eagles whilst the boot of Jeremy Irons kicked the rest of the points.

Pirates Amateurs are still without a win, though they came close, losing at home to Crediton 21-20. Aaron Hall, Ben Noyce and Kieron Brownfield all scored tries with Kelvin James kicking a conversion and a penalty.

Tiverton won at Moorlands against Saltash 40-14. Hillman and Horton got the Ashes tries with Max Venables adding both conversions.
Veor lost at home to Withycombe 62-10 with Stone and Arthur getting tries for the home side.

In Tribute Cornwall 1 leaders Liskeard & Looe defeated School of Mines 17-12, Bodmin thrashed Stithians 62-7, Helston defeated St. Agnes 22-17 and Perranporth won at Ponsmere Valley 32-12 against Roseland.

In Tribute Cornwall 2 leaders Illogan Park won 75-7 against St. Day, Lankelly-Fowey defeated Redruth Albany 28-15 and Camelford beat St. Just 19-12.

The Cornish Pirates had a big win in the British and Irish Cup winning 53-10 on the west coast of Scotland at Ayr.

That gives the Cornish side a maximum ten points from their opening two fixtures.

Next week it’s back to Championship rugby and a trip to Oxford to face London Welsh.

Congratulations to Cornish Pirates head coach Ian Davies who has been asked to coach the Barbarians squad for their Remembrance Day fixture against Combined Services at the Brickfields Plymouth on Tuesday November 12th kick-off 7-15 pm.

It was Cup weekend for London Cornish in the SE area of the Intermediate Cup and they won at Tunbridge Wells 15-3.

Like many I was both shocked and saddened to learn of the passing of Bobby Tonkin, part of that great Camborne side from the mid 70’s through to the early 80’s. He played for Cornwall on 27 occasions, playing in prestigious friendlies against South African Barbarians, United States of America, Canada and Capt. Crawshay’s.

A prop who could also hook Bobby went on to enjoy a fine career as a coach after his playing days with Camborne, Hayle, St. Ives and with Penzance & Newlyn as they began their climb through the leagues towards professional rugby.

I am sure all Cornish rugby supporters would wish to send their condolences to Bobby’s family at this sad time.

Congratulations to Cornwall 18 Group on their win in Devon last weekend and the best of luck up in Bristol when they take on Dorset & Wilts and Buckinghamshire.

Posted in Bill's Blog


What a great game of rugby between the Cornish Pirates and Ulster Ravens in the British & Irish Cup on Friday night down at the Mennaye.

The atmosphere was great just a shame that there was not more than around 1,350 to witness such a great advert for the B&I Cup.

Aaron Carpenter picked up from a scrum to run in the Pirates opening try after just 8 minutes.

Ulster Ravens showed they could play a bit, stringing together some fine phases of play resulting in fly-half James McKinney putting the Ulstermen ahead with a couple of penalties.

Pirates re-took the lead with a penalty from fly-half Angus Sinclair, then scored a second try from turnover ball, a strong tackle on an Ulster player saw the ball go loose with skipper Gavin Gattle – playing his 200th game for the Pirates – reacting the first to gather and pass to winger Mike Pope who went all the way to score.

Ravens’ skipper lock Lewis Stevenson put in a big drive towards the Pirates’ line and when the ball was worked back the ball went wide for winger Peter Nelson to score in the Old Western National Corner, to leave the Pirates 13-11 up at the break.

McKinney made up for his missed conversion before half-time to give the visitors the lead with an early second half penalty.

Pirates full-back Kieran Goss showed a fine turn of speed as he flew into the Newlyn Gate Corner for the Pirates’ third try.
With Ravens’ flanker Mike McCornish sin-binned for a professional foul, Sinclair kicked a further two penalties either side of a penalty for Ulster by McKinney to nudge the Pirates into a 24-17 lead.

Pirates’ grater fitness paid off during the final quarter, as the Pirates again made the most of turnover ball with winger Matt Evans racing in to secure the bonus point. Sinclair added the conversion and Kieran Hallett, on as a replacement, completed the scoring with a late penalty.

Next Saturday the Pirates make the trip to take on Scottish Premiership side Ayr who lost their opening game in the Cup at Jersey 28-16.
See the statement from Dicky Evans about his future commitment with regard to the management structure of the club in the link to WMN site.

In National League 2 South on Saturday, the Cornish All Blacks snatched a late win in stoppage time thanks to a last-gasp try from prop Tim Mathias, to win 34-33!

A seesaw game saw the other tries for Launceston scored by Lewis Paterson (2), Ryan Westren and Mike Rawlings with Kieron Lewitt’s reliable boot adding three conversions and a penalty.

Redruth secured try-scoring and losing bonus points in a 39-32 defeat at Bournemouth.

Redruth’s forwards bagged all four of their tries with Richard Brown, playing at flanker, getting the first. Prop Darren Jacques celebrated his Trelawny’s Army Player of the Year Award he received this week in fine style with a brace of tries, whilst lock Damien Cook got the Reds’ fourth try.

Fly-half Murray Westren kicked twelve points with his final penalty securing the losing bonus point.

In Tribute South West 1 West, St. Austell continued their fine start to the campaign with a well-earned draw at Thornbury 22-22. Adam Pellow, Dan Pearce and Mark Martin all crossed the whitewash for the Saints with Matt Shepherd adding a couple of conversions and a penalty.

Camborne had another hard-fought win, this time at home to Clevedon 33-20.

Tries for the Cherry & Whites were scored by wingers Adam Notman and Rob Floyd with fly-half Dave Mankee and replacement Aaron Hunt also bagging tries in a bonus point win.

Mankee’s boot added thirteen points.

Wadebridge Camels were undone at home by two late tries as North Petherton took the honours winning 27-19.

Matt Ballard, Jack Scott and Harry Woodward all scored tries for the Camels with Ryan Johns adding a couple of conversions.

In Tribute Western Counties West, Truro defeated St. Ives in an entertaining Cornish Derby at St. Clements 39-20.

Jake Champion, Karl Ranscombe, Adam Gayton, James Murdoch and Tom Hatfield (2) all crossed the Hakes’ line with Champion kicking a conversion and penalty and Hatfield converting both his scores.

For St. Ives, Neil Corin bagged a couple of tries and Sean Stevens bagged his side’s third. Jamie Prisk kicked a conversion and a penalty.

In the battle a t the foot of the table, Bude got a first win 10-0 over Paignton at Bencoolen with a couple of un-converted tries scored by Adam Black and James Comber.

Penryn will be disappointed with their loss at Kingsbridge 22-3. Jake Seviour saved a whitewash with a late drop-goal.

In London 2 SW, a good win for London Cornish at Portsmouth 30-8. The exiles scored five tries with lock Harry Somers getting the final score.

In Tribute Cornwall & Devon League, there were two Cornish Derbies; Hayle got the better of Veor 48-5.

Stefan Osborne (2), Scott Harvey (2), Rob Goodman (2) and Doug Arnull alls cored tries for the Lions with Martin Strick kicking five conversions and a penalty. For Veor Andrew Hitchens scored a first half try.

Falmouth edged a win over Newquay Hornets at the Rec 22-21. Sam Burke, James Dobson, and Tom Spiller scored tries for the Eagles with Jeremy Irons adding a couple of conversions and a penalty.

For the Hornets, Harry Pendrick and Ashley Mann scored tries with veteran Ian Morgan kicking a conversion and three penalties.
Saltash lost at Exeter Saracens 33-15.

In Tribute Cornwall 1, there was a big win for Liskeard & Looe over St. Agnes 94-0. The Lions ran in fourteen tries in their win over Aggie.
Bodmin won at Perranporth 41-17, Stithians defeated School of Mines at Penryn 20-18 and Helston won at home against Roseland 35-10.

In Tribute Cornwall 2, Illogan Park won at Lankelly-Fowey 53-17, whilst St. Just beat Redruth Albany at Trewergie 27-24. St. Day played their first game of the season, after being forced to concede their opening two fixtures, defeated Camelford 28-20.

As a footnote re the Pirates game against Ulster Ravens. Does anyone remember the last time Ulster visited Cornwall?
Well it was 1st September 1991 when they played Cornwall at Redruth with a side that included six Irish Internationals. For the record Ulster won 27-6 scoring two tries (worth four points then), five penalties and two conversions. For Cornwall Kevin Thomas kicked a couple of penalties. Cornwall’s captain that day Graham Dawe!

Posted in Bill's Blog


It must be A.G.M. time and our Cornwall Player of the Year Presentations.

Player’s Shields awaiting presentation

Trelawny’s Army Supporters Club held their A.G.M. yesterday at the St. Austell Brewery Visitor Centre.

The Army were delighted to have as guests for the evening officials from the Cornwall R.F.U. including President Ken Plummer, Chairman Denis Preece and Cornwall Team Secretary Ewart White.

There was also a very special welcome for the newly appointed Cornwall coaches; Graham Dawe and Ian Morgan.

Club Chairman Phil Trevarton reported on a very successful year for the club, the highlight of which was Cornwall getting to Twickenham.

The highlight of the evening were the player awards; with Redruth prop forward Darren Jacques receiving the “Bill Osborne” Memorial Shield as Cornwall Player of the Year as voted for by the club members. He said. “This award tops off a great year for me especially with the year Cornwall have had, the only thing that’s missing is not having won at Twickenham and that really is going to spur the boys on again this year as we strive to go one better.”


Photo – Darren Jacques receives his award from Cornwall Team Secretary Ewart White

The “Tony Mead” Memorial Shield went to Cornwall U.20’s skipper from last season flanker Neil Broadbank, who will still be eligible to play at this level again this season. He said. “It’s a great honour to be voted for this award, there are some fine former winners of this shield who have gone on to do well in the game and I am sure this will inspire me to progress further in my rugby career.”


Photo – Neil Broadbank with the “Tony Mead” U.20 Shield

There were further presentations made to Alan Mitchell, who stood down as Hon. Sec of the Cornwall R.F.U. last June and who is a past Chairman of the Army, and to long-serving Membership Secretary Thelma Sweet who has also stood down.

There was also the presentation to St. Austell Brewery of two match balls, which hopefully in time will be displayed in their visitor centre, one from this season’s match against Hertfordshire and the second a 1991 signed ball from the county final against Yorkshire at Twickenham, which fittingly Graham Dawe was on hand to make the presentation along with CRFU President Ken Plummer to St. Austell Brewery’s John Treglown, who also happens to be TASC’s President and a former Cornwall player in his own right.


Photo – former England Internationals Graham Dawe (right) and Ken Plummer (centre) present a signed match ball from Cornwall’s epic 1991 County Final win to St. Austell Brewery’s John Treglown

Posted in Bill's Blog


Hot on the heels of the Cornish Pirates success against Moseley on Friday night came news on Monday that the club is set to abandon it’s experiment with Friday night rugby after just two Championship matches!

I am not too sure how you can make a sound judgement that Friday night rugby can be deemed a failure after such a short space of time, though I do feel that another point made in Dicky Evans’ statement about the club reverting to play all home games on a Sunday afternoon was the telling factor, namely a 21% drop off in the number of season ticket renewals.

That figure, plus the associated spend that goes with it on match day, is to me the stat that set the alarm bells ringing early doors!
It will be interesting to see (hopefully it will!) if the return to Sunday afternoon rugby (2-30 or 3 pm please!) will bring the revenue flows back on course for the rest of the season.

Back on the field the Cornish Pirates made it three wins from four with a five point success against Moseley at the Mennaye winning 28-13.
Tom Riley helped himself to a brace of tries whilst, Jack Andrew and Mike Pope also crossed the whitewash. Pope’s try was a cracker, having hacked the ball on the winger judged the pick up to perfection before cutting in-field to score by the posts.

This Friday, (confirmed by the club), Pirates entertain Ulster Ravens in their first B&I Cup match with a 7-45 pm kick-off.

In National League 2 South, Redruth ground out a try bonus point with the final play of the game thanks to a try from scrum-half Ashley Hosking. Oh my word what a pig’s ear they made out of having a man advantage for all but the first four minutes when Taunton scrum-half Stuart Townsend was red carded for a stamp on Reds’ fly-half Murray Westren.

Redruth soon led 14-0 thanks to tries from skipper Chris Fuca and flanker Kieran Smith both converted by Westren. However, Taunton fought back. Redruth scored a third try early in the second half through the excellent Jake Rayment to lead 19-8.

Taunton hit back with two unconverted tries, luckily for the Reds Gary Kingdom had an off day with the boot or else, to make it a one point game 19-18. Hosking’s final flourish ensuring the win 24-18!

No such joy for the Cornish All Blacks as they lost to Ampthill & District 56-11. BJ Chapman scored a try with Jake Murphy adding a penalty and drop-goal for the All Blacks as they led 11-10. The home side then went on the rampage scoring 46 unanswered points!

In Tribute South West 1, a great day at St. Austell with the visit of RFU President Bob Reeves marking the club’s golden anniversary.
In what has been described as a “feisty game” Saints defeated Hornets (The Weston swarm) 26-17 with tries from Ian Venner, Adam Kellow, Dan Pearce and Mike Davey with Matt Shepherd adding a couple of conversions. Saints also won the yellow card battle 3/2!

Wadebridge Camels enjoyed a big win at Coney Hill 50-15. Tries for the Camels were scored by Luke Bazeley, James Grubb, Jack Scott, Will Pengelly (2) and Dom Hawkey (2). Ryan Johns kicked a further 15 points.

Camborne lost at table toppers Cleve 27-16. Shaun Buzza got Town’s try with Dave Mankee kicking the rest of the points.

In Tribute Western Counties West, there was a tense Cornish Derby at the Memorial Ground where Penryn just got the better of Truro 16-15. Josh Chambers scored the Borough’s only try with Jake Seviour’s boot kicking the rest of the points. For Truro Adam Gayton and Carl Ranscombe scored tries with Karl Martin kicking a conversion and a penalty.

St. Ives got their first win of the current campaign with an impressive 33-27 win over Torquay Athletic at Alexandra Road. Neil Corin (2), Ben Taylor, Tyler Gendall and Josh Semmens scored the Hakes’ tries with Kieran Harvey and Jamie Prisk both kicking a couple of conversions.

Bude are sadly still rooted to the foot of the table as they lost again this time at Okehampton 55-5. Joe Wilson with Bude’s sole try.

In London 2 SW, London Cornish lost at home to unbeaten Gosport & Fareham 30-20. Phil Frances, Will Carew-Gibbs and Mark Osei-Tutu scored the exiles tries with Luke Spells adding a conversion and penalty.

In Tribute Cornwall & Devon League, Hayle backed up their win at Falmouth last week with a 55-12 win at home to Withycombe. Alex Thornton (2), Doug Arnull (2), Rob Cutter, Scott Harvey, Talan Daniels (2) and Scott Murray all scored tries for the Lions with Harvey adding five conversions.

Falmouth had a big win at Veor 62-17, whilst there were losses for Newquay Hornets 31-0 at home to Crediton, Pirates Amateurs at home to Tiverton 37-6 and Saltash at Moorlands 22-13 to Honiton.

In Tribute Cornwall 1, Liskeard & Looe lead the way with two wins the latest 68-0 at Lux Park against Roseland. Bodmin are on their heels after defeating Camborne School of Mines 36-17. St. Agnes won at Stithians 44-24 and Helston beached Perranporth 28-10!

In Tribute Cornwall 2, Illogan Park lead the way, following a 58-5 win over Redruth Albany. Camelford beat Lankelly-Fowey 31-22. St. Day were forced to concede for the second week running this time at St. Just. They hope to be able to field a side against Camelford this Saturday.

Posted in Bill's Blog



Following the fantastic run by the Cornwall team in this season’s Bill Beaumont Cup in reaching the Twickenham final, it was always going to be a very difficult decision as to whom to vote for as our Cornwall Player of the Year.

There were so many candidates throughout the team who put their hands up as potential winners.

In the end a close poll saw REDRUTH PROP FORWARD DARREN JACQUES emerge as the player with the most votes, narrowly defeating two former winners of the award, skipper Ben Hilton in second place and Sam Hocking, third.


Darren Jacques – Photo by Simon Bryant/Iktisphoto

The cornerstone for any side is it’s pack, the front row is where it all begins. Jacqusey excels not only in the tight but also in the loose as a fine all round player.

He has for many seasons been one of the crowd’s favourites and this award fully justifies his commitment and service to the Cornwall team.
Jacques has been a stalwart of the Redruth pack for many seasons and captained the Reds from 2009-11.

Cornwall and Redruth prop Darren Jacques. Simon Bryant/

Photo – Simon Bryant / Iktisphoto

He previously played for Penryn before moving to the Reds. Jacques has also represented the Barbarians and played for England Counties
This season saw him notch his 25th county appearance.

The winner of the TONY MEAD MEMORIAL SHIELD CORNWALL U.20 PLAYER goes to last season’s Cornwall U.20’s skipper NEIL BROADBANK who also plays for REDRUTH.

Broadbank a fine flanker made a few appearances for the Reds during their National League 2 South campaign last season.

He also made the final trials for England Counties U.20 squad narrowly missing out on selection for the tour to Georgia.

Broadbank is currently at university in Exeter.

Posted in Bill's Blog


As you will have seen from my previous entry I took in Camborne’s home Tribute South West 1 West league match against Cullompton last Saturday.

Always a pleasure to visit Crane Park and catch up with the Cherry and Whites and following on from their disappointment in the play-offs last season to re-enter the National Leagues, Camborne hope to go one better this time around.

Play-offs are always a lottery and the best way to avoid them is to finish in the automatic promotion place (s) and that really must be their aim this season.

Despite some below par performances in their opening three league games, especially the loss at Bridgwater, Camborne showed against Cullompton that they will again be there or there about’s come the end of the season.

Five tries in a 34-13 success against a side that had shipped just sixteen points in their opening three league fixtures was a very pleasing outcome for the Cherry and Whites’ coaching staff and set them up nicely for a stiff test on the road when they travel to un-beaten Cleve this Saturday.

And there is strength in depth at the club as on Saturday the Second XV took on Lanner with seven of last season’s Cornwall Cup winning side lining up to face the re-formed village side. For the record Lanner won 24-17 in what proved to be an entertaining match on the Crane Park pitch.

Sticking with South West 1 West, St. Austell enjoyed their trip to South Devon winning 54-0 at Sidmouth. Paul Winterbottom (2), Ian Venner (2), Ben Chenoweth (2), Matt Shepherd and Dan Pearce all scored tries for the Saints with Shepherd converting all but one!

Wadebridge Camels were not to be outdone as they enjoyed a big win at home defeating Clevedon 50-15. Skipper Gary Gynn opened up the Camels try count as the visitors led 10-0 early doors. That set the scene for a Camels try-fest as Matt Ballard, Ryan Johns (2), Jack Oulton (2), Jake Grubb and James Grubb all crossing the whitewash. Johns kicked five conversions to end the match with a 20 point haul.

In the Greene King IPA Championship on Saturday, the Cornish Pirates travelled to last season’s National League 1 Champions Ealing Trailfinders and came away from West London with a 31-17 win.

Left wing Kieran Goss scored a couple of tries with prop Jack Andrew, hooker Aaron Carpenter and scrum-half Tom Kessell all scored tries for the Pirates for a bonus point win. Kieran Hallett helped himself to three conversions.

In National League 2 South, mixed fortunes for both Cornish sides. The Cornish All Blacks had Jake Murphy to thank for a last gasp 21-18 win over Hartpury College. Murphy had a field day with the boot kicking six penalties to add to an earlier success from Kieron Lewitt before the full-back was stretched off from the field with a neck injury (we all wish Kieron well for a swift recovery).

Sadly for Redruth early promise failed to turn into points as they lost 27-15 at Chinnor trailing just before half-time 20-3 with a Murray Westren penalty all to show for, the Reds rallied to score a good try just on the break through Luke Jones with Westren adding the extras.

Redruth nudged closer with an un-converted try scored by prop Darren Jacques but that was as good as it would get for the Reds as Chinnor ran in an interception try to kill the game.

Worrying for the Reds were injuries to Max Bodilly, and Matt O’Leary, hopefully they will both be fit for the visit of Taunton Titans this Saturday.

In Tribute Western Counties West, Penryn lost for the first time this season as an injury-time penalty gave Torquay Athletic a 26-24 win. Colin Campbell and Andrew Seviour scored tries for the Borough with Jake Seviour kicking fourteen points.

Truro enjoyed a big win at St. Clements 48-0 against Paignton. Tom Hatfield, Ashley Lawton (2), Luke Trescothick, Adam Gayton, Matt Cross, Karl Ranscombe and James Murdoch all scored tries with Karl Martin kicking the other points.

Bude lost at home to Wellington 15-5 with No.8 James Comber getting their only points with a try.

St. Ives lost at Teignmouth 45-3. Jamie Prisk with their sole points from a penalty.

Up in London 2 SW, London Cornish lost 25-13 at Tottonians. Matt Hakes scored the exiles try with Matt Spells kicking the conversion and a couple of penalties.

The Tribute Cornwall & Devon League saw only one Cornish win as Hayle won 21-15 at Falmouth in the local derby of the day. The Lions had Martin Strick’s boot to thank for the win. Both sides scored three tries but Falmouth failed to land any conversions.

Talan Daniels, Tony Williams and a penalty-try award made up the Lions three tries, whilst for the Eagles Tony Whittle, Tom Edmonds and Olli Church all crossed.

Pirates Amateurs are still waiting for their first win of the season as they lost for the fourth game this time 18-0 to Exeter Saracens.

Saltash, still in shock from their heavy loss at Exeter Uni the previous week, lost again on the road this time at Withycombe 22-10. Ryan Cruickshank scored all their points with a try conversion and a penalty.

Veor lost at Crediton 30-5. Winger Gareth Mankee getting an un-converted try for the visitors.

It was the first round of league matches in both Tribute Cornwall Leagues 1 & 2.

In Cornwall 1 there were wins for Liskeard & Looe at Perranporth 58-7, Camborne School of Mines defeated St. Agnes at Penryn 22-11, Bodmin won at Helston 17-5 and finally Roseland beat Stithians 17-12.

In Cornwall 2, Illogan Park won at home to Camelford 51-14 and St. Just pipped Lankelly-Fowey 15-14. The game between Redruth Albany and St. Day resulted in a home walk/over for Albany as St. Day had front row problems. Hopefully St. Day will soon have sufficient players back to compete again.

Posted in Bill's Blog




Camborne made it back-to-back home wins witha five try win against a Cullompton side that until today had conceded just sixteen points during their opening three league games, reports Bill Hooper from the Recreation Ground.

Playing against a stiff wind during the first half the Cherry and Whites pack were in rampant form. There was an inspirational performance from skipper, No.8 Dave Roberts, who carried a tremendous amount of ball, whilst the front row of Nigel Endean, Sam Bartle and Will Webster were always in the thick of the action, along with lock James Goldsworthy who caught the eye in the lineout and in the loose.

Camborne took the lead on 10 minutes when a penalty was kicked to the corner, from the catch-and-drive by Goldsworthy the ball was moved wide with centre Steve Kenward crashing over in a pile of bodies.

In the tricky wind fly-half Dave Mankee kicked an excellent conversion.

From the re-start Camborne were caught offside presenting Cullompton with a chance to claw back three points, which centre and skipper Adam Pearce gratefully accepted.

Camborne continued to enjoy the better of the exchanges and it was no surprise that they doubled their advantage just after the half-hour mark when another good drive from the forwards was finished off with a second try scored by lock Shaun Buzza, Mankee was again on the money with the extras.

Cullompton enjoyed their best period just prior to half-time. Pearce was unlucky when a penalty attempt cannoned off an upright, but he was on cue with the conversion to wing Paul Baker’s try to make the half-time score 14-10 to Town.
Camborne came out fired up for the second half and before long they had scored a third try as full back Joe Parma took scrum-half Dean Pascoe’s pass to dot down.

Tempers became a little frayed resulting in Cullompton’s flanker Sean Mardell sin-binned for some foul play.

Mankee stretched Camborne’s advantage with the resulting penalty from in front of the sticks.

Flying winger Rob Floyd made the most of a blindside break to score Camborne’s bonus point try in the scoreboard corner.

Cullompton reduced the deficit with a penalty kicked by Pearce and no doubt harboured hopes of snatching a losing bonus point, but those hopes were dashed as Floyd was put in with a delightful pass from replacement Joel Matavesi to score his second try of the game and Camborne’s fifth.

Centre Grant Thirlby who had assumed kicking duties from the departed Mankee, kicked an excellent touchline conversion to complete the scoring for a 34-13 score-line.

Camborne 34 pts
Tries – Kenward, Buzza, Parma, Floyd (2), Conversions – Mankee (2), Thirlby, Penalty – Mankee

Cullompton 13 pts
Try – Baker, Conversion – Pearce, Penalties – Pearce (2)
Yellow Card – Mardell (56)

Camborne: J Parma, R Floyd, S Kenward, G Thirlby, A Hunt, D Mankee, D Pascoe;
N Endean, S Bartle, W Webster, S Buzza, J Goldsworthy, G Hall, R Spargo, D Roberts (capt).

Replacements (all used); L Hocking, M Woolcock J Matavesi

Cullompton: M Richards, P Baker, A Pearce (capt), T Harold, M Busch, A Brooks, J Shere; J Woof, D Driscoll, C Grant, O Reed, O Kittow, J Turner, S Mardell, A Ford

Replacements: A Isaac, S Vercoe, A Longden

Referee: Darren Curry (Cornwall RRS)

Crowd: 453

Posted in Bill's Blog

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