Two Bonus Points and The Pirates Stay Top




Ealing Trailfinders 41   Cornish Pirates 35

Report by Phil Westren, photos Brian Tempest

It was stated pre-match that this 2nd versus 1st Round 5 Greene King IPA Championship encounter would be a measuring stick for the Cornish Pirates and to a degree it was. Yes, there were problems at the set-piece, but the way the team fought back to acquire two bonus points was admirable. In the process they also stay top of the league table.

Changes in the Cornish Pirates starting XV from the one that faced Richmond the previous week saw Josh Caulfield selected at blind-side flanker, with Matt Bolwell moving to Number 8, whilst alongside them in the back-row John Stevens was making his 50th appearance for the club. One other change was in the front-row, where Jack Andrew returned to the starting line-up at loose-head prop.

On a perfect late September’s afternoon the home side opened the scoring in just the seventh minute. Fly-half Craig Willis measured his cross-kick to the right and lanky centre Guy Armitage used height advantage to gather and make the touchdown. Willis added the extra two points.

Problems faced at scrum time led to the Pirates giving penalties away. However, after the Trailfinders missed touch it gave an opportunity for full-back Kyle Moyle to counter, the momentum providing a position from where Caulfield scored an unconverted try.

The Pirates were back on track but with better still to come. Centre Callum Patterson used initial power midfield for the ball to then find wing Robin Wedlake (pictured above). Having scored five tries in the previous two games could he make it six in his first Championship season? The answer – yes, a mix of strength and pace seeing him run clear to the line. The conversion again missed

Ealing Trailfinders lost the services through injury of full-back David Johnston, his departure enabling former ‘Pirate’ Laurence May to enter the fray earlier than expected as a replacement.

The Pirates attacked strongly in search of a third try when a knock-on suddenly enabled their hosts to counter attack with vengeance. USA international flanker Andrew Durutalo led the charge upfield and ball moved right it was wing Seb Stegmann who scored.

A well-struck Cargill penalty nudged the Pirates back in front but things were about to go downhill for the visitors in time remaining before the break. The impressive Willis, a former Newcastle ‘Falcon’ and one of many new faces at Vallis Way, ran cleverly for a try that he also converted, and the Pirates then lost the services of prop Tyler Gendall to the sin bin. To make matters worse Willis also added the extras to a second try scored by Stegmann.

To go in at half-time 26-13 down was naturally disappointing for the Pirates but considering their problems at the scrum and in general giving too many penalties away, plus going a man down, it was no surprise.

A second try for Armitage at the start of the second half was quickly followed by a second penalty for the Pirates kicked by Cargill, and then a converted Durutalo try that surely put the result beyond doubt.

Even after Durutalo was soon after sin-binned there was no advantage to the Pirates, as a penalty from Willis made it 41-16.

The Pirates were in danger of staring at a really hefty defeat, so now really was the time to show accustomed character. They did. A fine pass from replacement Harvey Skinner saw Moyle latch onto it at pace to score a try to the right of the posts that Skinner converted.

Fresh legs were making an impact, including among them back-rower James McRae, with thoughts now focused on perhaps securing a bonus-point-providing fourth try.

In time remaining, the Pirates would go one better with two more tries scored by Wedlake. If his second, right near the end, could be converted, then a second bonus point was the prize. The kick to be taken was anything but easy, so credit to Skinner for slotting it so well. Suddenly, the final result gave considerable satisfaction – it almost felt like victory.


Commenting after the game, Cornish Pirates co-coach Alan Paver said. “The first hour was frustrating and our set-piece was disappointing, which we will be giving attention to, however we are an 80 minutes team – 90 minutes team if need be – and we again showed good resilience at the end.

“After the whole momentum of the game went away from us I am absolutely delighted with the character we showed to get back into the match.

“The guys looked at each other and said to themselves we have to dig in here and find a way, and with the bench then bringing a different type of energy they lit the game up a little bit and to get two points from the match is not to be sniffed at and we’ll take as a plus.”.

Ealing Trailfinders:   15 David Johnston (22 Laurence May, 22), 14 Seb Stegmann, 13 Guy Armitage, 12 Pat Howard, 11 James Cordy-Redden, 10 Craig Willis, 9 Luke Carter (21 Jordan Burns, 62); 1 Jack O’Connell (17 Jake Ellwood, 70), 2 Alun Walker (16 Matt Cornish 46), 3 Elliot Millar-Mills (18 Ben Betts 62), 4 Ben Landry, 5 Tom Denton (19 Ben West, 39), 6 Jordy Reid, 7 Andrew Durutalo (20 Ollie Stedman, 77), 8 Rayn Smid (captain).

Yellow card: Andrew Durutalo (52-62).


Cornish Pirates:   15 Kyle Moyle, 14 Robin Wedlake, 13 Rory Parata (22 Alex O’Meara, 54), 12 Callum Patterson, 11 Harry Strong, 10 Will Cargill (21 Harvey Skinner, 54), 9 Alex Day (20 Jake Ashby, 70); 1 Jack Andrew, 2 Sam Matavesi (16 Dan Frost, 59), 3 Tyler Gendall (17 Billy Keast 54), 4 Toby Freeman, 5 Brett Beukeboom (captain-18 Danny Cutmore, 59), 6 Josh Caulfield, 7 John Stevens (blood-19 James McRae, 34-40) 8 Matt Bolwell (19 James McRae 54).

Yellow card:   Tyler Gendall (39-49).

Scorers: Ealing Trailfinders – tries: 13 Guy Armitage (07, 41), 14 Seb Stegman (31,40), 10 Craig Willis (37), 7 Andrew Durutalo (47); cons: 10 Craig Willis (8, 38, 40, 48); pen: 10 Craig Willis (57).

Cornish Pirates – tries: 6 Josh Caulfield (18), 14 Robin Wedlake (21, 67, 80), 15 Kyle Moyle (60); cons:21 Harvey Skinner (61, 80); pens: 10 Will Cargill (34, 43).

Referee:   John Meredith (RFU)


Posted in Bill's Blog

Jake & Torin scoop TASC Player of the Year awards


Trelawny’s Army members have voted Cornwall captain Jake Murphy as their 2018 Cornwall Player of the Year.

Centre Murphy played in all of Cornwall’s senior fixtures last season captaining the side in what proved to be a turbulent Bill Beaumont Cup campaign.


Jake Murphy Captain of Cornwall (Barnstaple) presented the Tamar Cup by Devon RFU President Treve Mitchell and Cornwall RFU Chairman Denis Preece during the Tamar Cup match between Cornwall and Devon at the Tregorrick Park on April 16th 2018, St Austell Cornwall- Photo mandatory by-line: ©Simon Bryant/Iktis Photo –

Murphy who is still playing his club rugby at Barnstaple this season, having previously played for many seasons at Launceston, will be presented with the Bill Osborne Memorial Shield at the club’s A.G.M. at St. Austell Brewery on Wednesday 26th September.

The award for the Cornwall Under 20 Player of the Year went to Launceston’s No.8 Torin Clarke who led the Cornwall Under 20s to the Jason Leonard Cup final at Twickenham last season were they lost the final to Yorkshire.


Trelawny’s Army Hon Sec Ian Gordon presents Torin Clark Captain of Cornwall U20s (Launceston) with a traveling expenses contribution for the 13 players attending the South West Trials during the Jason Leonard Cup U20s County Championship Semi Final match between Cornwall U20s v Cheshire U20s at the Recreation Ground on April1st 2018, Camborne Cornwall- Photo mandatory by-line: ©Simon Bryant/Iktis Photo –

Clarke was also unlucky to suffer an injury during the trials for an England Counties Under 20 berth for the summer’s tour in June.

Clarke, who came through the youth system at St. Austell RFC, will be presented with the Tony Mead Memorial Shield the same evening.

Congratulations to both our winners.

The meeting is open to all members and commences at 7:45 pm. Pasties will be available.

Posted in Bill's Blog

League round up

In National 2 South, Redruth travelled over to Guernsey for a Saturday evening game played in typical autumnal Cornish weather with driving rain and wind.

Despite the conditions the Reds held on to win 16-15 and bring back home four points.

Richie Kevern converted Ben Fox’s second half try, whilst Aaron Simmonds kicked three penalties.

Just the result required following the loss at Worthing and something to build on ahead of the game this weekend against Clifton.

In the South West Premier, Camborne left it late to overhaul Old Patesians at the Rec 18-16 thanks to a Dave Mankee penalty, brilliantly struck when it mattered most.

Old Pats belied their recent poor form racing into a 16-0 half-time lead with all their points coming from full-back James Aherne.

The Cherry and Whites needed to be patient during the second half but they slowly got back into it thanks to unconverted tries from skipper Jon Drew, Lewis Vinnicombe and Alex Ducker, with time fast running out up stepped Mankee to do the biz.

In Tribute South West 1 West, match of the day had to be at Polson Bridge as two unbeaten sides came face-to-face. In the end it was visitors Okehampton who took the spoils 17-10 against Launceston.

Player-coach Ryan Westren scored CAB’s try, which was converted by Glen Coles who also landed a penalty.

Tough day the office for St. Ives as they drew a blank at Keynsham 17-0, they will now look forward to entertaining Launceston at Alexandra Road this Saturday in what is certain to be a cracking game.

In London 1 South, another close game for London Cornish but happily for them they got the win against Tottonians 17-16.Rich Stephens got the exiles’ only try he also bagged a couple of penalties as did skipper George Kimmins.

In Western Counties West, St. Austell racked up a good win against Winscombe 31-3. Tries for the Saints were scored by Liam Freeman, Miles Davey and Hugh Noot in the first half with CJ Boyce and Ben Plummer crossing in the second period Freeman popped over three conversions.

Falmouth got home thanks to a couple of second half penalties kicked by Justyn Irons 16-10 against Bideford. Irons also kicked a penalty in the first half and converted Tony Emmins first half try.

Wadebridge Camels also drew a blank on the road going down 12-0 at Paignton.

Truro continue to show improved form with a 36-10 win at Saltash who remain winless. Saltash’s tries came from Joe Roynane and skipper Lewis Wells.

In the Tribute Cornwall & Devon League, Penryn warmed up for Saturday’s clash at Torquay with a 28-6 win at home to Topsham. Borough’s tries came from George Jones, Chris Hillier (2) and James Salisbury, Mitch Vague bagged all four conversions.

Bude defeated Lanner 17-0 at Bencoolen thanks to tries from Johnny Wright and Angus Hodges both scores converted by Olly Denford who also kicked a penalty.

Pirates Amateurs celebrated their first win of the season 14-9 at home to Tavistock. Kieran Brownfield scored a try converted by Steve Evans and they also had a penalty-try.

Liskeard-Looe gave Torquay a good game before going down 17-5 at home. James Rogers with their try early in the second half.

Not much joy for Hayle as they slumped 62-0 at Honiton.


Posted in Bill's Blog

Pirates Stay Top After Four Games

Kyle Moyle looks to break the tackle. Photo: Brian Tempest


Cornish Pirates 29   Richmond 19

Keen to keep progressing, the Cornish Pirates made it four bonus points wins out of four in this season’s Greene King IPA Championship, thus maintaining their status as the early league leaders, reports Phil Westren from the Mennaye Field.

The Pirates made several changes, in the forwards and on the bench, from the squad that faced Hartpury the previous week. James McRae was making his first Championship appearance at No 8 in place of the injured Tom Duncan, and flanker John Stevens was also handed a starting place in the back-row. Props Tyler Gendall and Billy Keast were named to make their first Championship starts of the season, whilst Alex O’Meara and Jake Ashby were keen for action off the bench. For the latter it would be a Championship debut.

After a bright enough start for the Cornish Pirates, when man-of-the-match John Stevens threatened at the old Western National corner, it was Richmond who enjoyed an impressive spell. Their scrum looked particularly strong and they also had some able performers in the backs. Indeed, good inter-play down the right ended with wing Sam Edgerley sprinting in at the clubhouse corner. The conversion from full-back Rob Kirby missed to the right of the posts.

Conditions were bright and breezy, although a little cool, whereas on the field the combative action quickly heated up. Richmond’s No 8 Ed Milne was called aside after one ‘incident’, with him then at least extending a hand of friendship to opponents after being spoken to by referee Mr. Woodthorpe.

A penalty awarded the Pirates was kicked by fly-half Will Cargill, and after Richmond strived to apply further pressure it was Cargill who again showed his prowess with the boot. This time, however, it was with a superb kick out of hand, his strike carried some 80 metres from inside one ‘22’ to the other. Territory acquired would lead to a second Pirates score, this time in the form of a penalty try following a potent surge to the line.

After their below par opening the Pirates were now looking a dominant force, helped further when visiting hooker Ross Grimstone was sent to the ‘Biffa’ sponsored sin bin. Keen to spread the ball wide it would be from a driving maul that the next score came, with home hooker Sam Matavesi registering his fourth Championship try of the season. Cargill’s conversion looked good, however the Assistant Referees judged otherwise.

Approaching half-time a further two tries would be created. The first converted effort went to Richmond centre Cam Hudson who scored at the Penzance posts following a particularly powerful run from wing Jono Woodward. As for the second, it would be a converted score for the Pirates, the ball moved wide to wing Robin Wedlake who followed up a 4-try performance at Hartpury with his fifth Championship try of the season.

Holding a 22-12 advantage at the break, it looked at the start of the second as if the Pirates would further extend their lead, with a possible 40 metre run-in from Matavesi. As it worked out he was unlucky not to keep on his feet, however there was a sense that a further home score was surely in the pipeline – and it was. Forwards and backs raised the tempo, and with a penalty award some 10 metres out it was ‘Mr. Consistent’, in the shape of scrum-half Alex Day who was quick to react with a quick tap and go to the Penzance posts. A sought for bonus point was in the bag and Cargill’s conversion was a formality.

For most of the second period, which was one broken up with the introduction of replacements, play would be evenly enough contested. The Pirates knew ahead of this game that their opponents were a together and hard-working side who would compete to the end, and they did just that. Final points also went their way, thanks to a try scored by centre Ronnie McLean and a conversion kicked by Kirby.

So, four Championships wins to start this campaign, added to the seven at the end of last season, now makes it 11 on the trot. Impressive, yes, but can they make it a dozen when they drop by Vallis Way next Saturday to take on the strong Ealing Trailfinders side? Time will tell, as ever.

Cornish Pirates:   15 Kyle Moyle, 14 Robin Wedlake, 13 Rory Parata, 12 Callum Patterson (Alex O’Meara 67), 11 Harry Strong, 10 Will Cargill (Harvey Skinner 65), 9 Alex Day (Jake Ashby 70); 1 Billy Keast, 2 Sam Matavesi (Dan Frost 65), 3 Tyler Gendall (Jack Andrew 69), 4 Toby Freeman (Danny Cutmore 69), 5 Brett Beukeboom (c), 6 Matt Bolwell, 7 John Stevens, 8 James McRae (Josh Caulfield h/t).

Cornish Pirates – tries: Penalty try, Matavesi, Wedlake, Day; cons: Cargill (2), pen: Cargill.

Richmond:   15 Rob Kirby, 14 Jono Woodward, 13 Cam Hudson, 12 Ronnie McLean, 11 Sam Edgerley, 10 Rory Damant (Lewis Dennett 52), 9 Jamie Gibbs (Jordan Simpson-Hefft 52); 1 Will Goodrick-Clarke (Jermey Cunnew 65), Ross Grimstone (Jason Phipps 70), 3 Craig Trenier (Dave Spelman 69), 4 Will Warden 5 Chris Davies (Harison Edwards 64), 6 Jake Parker (Charlie Lenygon 71), 7 Jesse Liston (c, Jason Phipps 24-31), 8 Ed Milne.

Yellow card: Grimstone.

Richmond – tries: Edgerley, Hudson, McLean; cons: Kirby (2).

 Referee:   Anthony Woodthorpe (RFU).

Attendance:   1,467

St. Austell Brewery’s Man-of-the-Match:   John Stevens.

Posted in Bill's Blog

Round up from the leagues Sat 15th September


Having started this season’s National League 2 South campaign on a positive note with two wins, Redruth’s supporters were given a nasty reality check on Saturday as their beloved Reds crashed to a 68-21 loss at Worthing.

It looked good at half-time 14-all and all to play for but four tries in the opening nine minutes of the second half put head coach Ian Davies’ Worthing side well in command and they never looked back.

Brad Howe and Todd Prisk scored the first half tries for the Reds both converted by Richie Kevern with a penalty-try being their only points in the second half as Worthing racked up the points.

Redruth are overseas this Saturday as they travel to Guernsey (6 pm) to take on another side with the Raiders moniker.

In South West Premier, Camborne held out for a fine win at Newton Abbot 38-37 with Alex Ducker scoring five of Town’s six tries, the other score came from Lewis Thomas. Connor Swan kicked four conversions.

In Tribute South West 1 West, no game for St.Ives as Coney Hill couldn’t raise a side. The Hakes get the five points.  The away game in January will now be played at Alexandra Road.

Launceston maintained their impressive start with a third straight bonus point win this time at North Petherton 48-14.

In London 1 South, injury hit London Cornish travelled to Westcombe Park (old foes of the Reds) but went down to defeat 52-26. The exiles scored three tries through Steffan Lloyd  and David Chalkley with skipper George Kimmins kicking 16 points.

In Western Counties West, St. Austell could only manage a losing bonus point at home to leaders Sidmouth in 20-13 defeat. Kyle Marriott scored their try converted by Liam Freeman who also landed two penalties.

Truro built on last week’s draw at Kingsbridge to earn a 20-12 win at St. Clements against Paignton. Scrum-half Owen Davey scored fifteen of his side’s points with a try two conversions and a couple of penalties. Truro’s other try came from Luke Tidball.

Further welcome news for Truro, Ashley Riches has returned to his home club from Camborne to bolster their pack.

Saltash are still looking for their first win after another defeat this time at Tiverton 33-10. Kyle Fenton scored the Ashes only try converted by Kieran Down who also landed a penalty.

Falmouth lost for the first time this season 27-15 up at Wellington. A slow start saw the Eagles concede four tries in the opening quarter and it was uphill from then on.

Wadebridge Camels got off the mark at the third time of asking with a 40-12 win at home to Kingsbridge.

In the Tribute Cornwall & Devon League, Penryn won 39-3 at Tavistock. The Borough scored six tries through Andy Seviour, Dan Duval, James Salisbury (2), Grant Randlesome and Tomas Townsend with Townsend also kicking three conversions and a penalty.

Bude lost their unbeaten record going down 43-13 at Torquay Athletic. Tries for Bude came from Rory Hodges and Ollie Mounce with Olly Denford kicking a penalty.

Hayle picked up a try-scoring bonus point in their 34-24 defeat at Withycombe, both Tony Matthews and Talan Daniels scored a brace.

Pirates Amateurs were again well beaten this time at South Molton 55-3, whilst Liskeard-Looe were defeated by fellow promoted side Topsham 42-17.

Posted in Bill's Blog

Co-op Stores Step Up for Wooden Spoon


Wooden Spoon is the rugby charity for disadvantaged and disabled children. The Cornwall region has worked tirelessly to raise more than £120,000 for projects supporting disadvantaged and disabled children in the local community. All the money raised in Cornwall remains in Cornwall to benefit these children.

Co-op stores in the county have recently collected over £4K in counter top boxes, a wonderful effort, but it doesn’t stop there! Rebecca Watson (pictured) of the St Just Co-op is leading a sponsored charity event with the aim of raising another £2K to the total.

Rebecca explains, “We are from the Co-op in St Just and we are completing a sponsored charity event in aid of Cornwall Wooden Spoon.

“Cornwall Wooden Spoon positively transforms lives of children and young people with a disability or facing disadvantage through the power of rugby.

“We intend to visit all 32 Cornwall RFU affiliated clubs within a 24-hour timescale, commencing on Saturday 6th October from St Just Rugby Club, taking photographic evidence at each club.”

You can help Rebecca hit the target by donating here:

Remember where the money will go and please support the challenge.

Posted in Bill's Blog

Pirates Make it 10 Wins on The Trot

Hartpury RFC 17    Cornish Pirates 46

Report by Pirates’ Media Officer Phil Westren

Overcoming something of an indifferent start to this contest, when they went 12 points down with just eight minutes on the clock, the Cornish Pirates recovered so admirably well to not only back into the game but to also proceed to comfortably win it. For wing Robin Wedlake it also proved especially memorable, as he registered an incredible four tries in the match.

Robin Wedlake speeds towards the try-line – Photo: Brian Tempest

For this latest encounter, which followed two bonus point wins from their opening two games, the Pirates named the same 22 players, starting XV and bench, as had featured against Coventry Rugby the previous weekend.

In opposition was a Hartpury RFC side that had finished 10th in last season’s Championship – their first playing at the level – and who had performed well in this season’s opening two games, winning 16-5 at home to Yorkshire Carnegie and then losing a closely fought contest, 28-17, away to Doncaster Knights.

New faces at Hartpury RFC include the half-back pairing of Richard Bolt and Luke Cozens, who arrived at the Gillman’s Ground from Rouen in France. Scrum-half Bolt is a former ‘Pirate’, whilst for Cozens it is a second spell with Hartpury for a player who has also performed for Bath.

The Cornish Pirates won all four games (two in the League and two in the Cup) played between the teams last season, however they were expecting a much tougher examination in this match, which is how, at the start anyway, it turned out

In the previously mentioned indifferent opening period, full-back Kyle Moyle did well to deny his opposite number Ben Foley from delivering an early score from a kick-chase, however it mattered little as a third minute try was all but immediately after scored by Hartpury centre Steven Leonard. Cozens duly converted.

Clever with the boot, it was a pinpoint kick out of hand by Cozens that led to his team’s second try. Left wing Jake Henry was the ball recipient and scorer with Cozens this time luckless in adding the conversion.

A thought pre-match was that this game perhaps had the potential to be a ‘banana skin’ for the Pirates. The display in the first quarter strengthened the view. However, managing acquired possession, approaching midway through the first half the Pirates, wearing their purple-coloured ‘Tribute’ away shirts, at last settled into the game. A platform was set by the forwards and from space then created it was Wedlake who was over for his first ever Championship score. Fly-half Will Cargill added a fine conversion to narrow the deficit.

It has recently been said that the Pirates have a deep belief in what they are doing, so to get on the scoreboard was clearly a step in the right direction. Indeed, as if to rubber stamp the view, good inter-play from Moyle and centre Callum Patterson ended with the latter making it over for a converted try that gave the Pirates a two-point lead.

In celebration, supporter chants of ‘Give us a P, Give us an I, Give us an Aargh!’ reverberated about the ground, whilst Wedlake, who has settled quickly at the level, then intercepted and ran 80 metres for his second score, with Cargill again adding the extras.

A penalty goal by Cargill extended the Pirates lead, but it was Hartpury who ended the half strongly. After backs had joined forwards in a driving maul, hooker Will Tanner, who made five appearances for the Pirates when dual-registered with Bath Rugby back in 2012/13, was identified as a try-scorer. The conversion attempt from Cozens drifted wide, for the scoreboard to read 17-24 at half-time.

Applying extra pressure on their opponents at the start of the second period, following several penalty awards it was Cargill who breezed over for the Pirates fourth try of the afternoon. The conversion attempt to his bonus-point-providing score, however, missed.

Pressure, of course, always tests the discipline of players, so when the Pirates applied a further squeeze it was no surprise to see Hartpury lose a player to the sin bin. Experienced centre Luke Eves was the man shown yellow by referee Mr. Hudson.

Continuing to dominate it was not long before the Pirates scored their fifth try of the afternoon. Wing Harry Strong initially went close, before from a scrum Alex Day linked play through Cargill, Patterson and then Wedlake who secured his hat-trick.

Although not a try-scorer this week, hooker Sam Matavesi displayed accustomed power and then a subtle offload that led to Cargill feeding Wedlake once more. Could it be a fourth try for the young Cornishman? Yes, it was – and he could be forgiven for thinking it a dream.

Both teams made changes and for the Pirates replacement Harvey Skinner scored the last try of the afternoon, which he also converted to deliver a 46-17 points victory.

Hartpury had been denied any points in the second half and having recorded seven Championship wins on the trot to end last season, and now opening this new campaign with three more (and with a bonus point from each), the Pirates had made it 10 x consecutive victories, which is quite some record.

Coach Gavin Cattle was a happy man after the game, commenting:

“We didn’t start particularly well but the pleasing thing is that when we found our feet I was really pleased how well the boys stuck to task.

 “Conditions were good for playing positive rugby and we freed up a bit once we got a few scores. There was some wonderful offloading play and running of support lines by the likes of Toby Freeman and Sam Matavesi and the backs also performed well. Credit to Robin Wedlake for scoring four tries and showing what’s he’s got especially with his well taken interception score.”

Gavin added:

 “In winning the game we showed a lot of energy and the spirit was very good, including from the replacements who made sure we kept our foot on the gas.”


Hartpury RFC:   15 Ben Foley, 14 Ed Sheldon, 13 Steve Leonard (22 James Forrester, 35), 12 Luke Eves,  11 Jake Henry, 10 Luke Cozens, 9 Richard Bolt (21 Harry Cochrane, 59); 1 Mike Flook (17 Dan Murphy, 48), 2 Will Tanner (16 Luke Stratford 48), 3 Rupert Harden (18 Joe Morris, 53), 4 Alex Craig, 5 Simon Linsell (captain, 19 James Scott, 65), 6. Rob Langley, 7 Mat Gilbert (20 James Stephenson, 59) 8 Will Safe.

 Yellow card:  12 Luke Eves (53-63)

Cornish Pirates:   15 Kyle Moyle, 14 Robin Wedlake, 13 Rory Parata (22 Matt Evans, 67), 12 Callum Patterson, 11 Harry Strong, 10 Will Cargill (21 Harvey Skinner, 65), 9 Alex Day (20 Alex Schwarz, 67); 1 Christian Judge (17 Tyler Gendall, 51), 2 Sam Matavesi (16 Dan Frost, 65), 3 Jack Andrew, 4 Toby Freeman, 5 Brett Beukeboom (captain), 6 Josh Caulfield (18 Danny Cutmore 67), 7 Matt Bolwell, 8 Tom Duncan (19 John Stevens, 40).


Hartpury RFC – tries: 13 Steven Leonard (3), 11 Jake Henry (8), 2 Will Tanner (39); cons: 10 Luke Cozens (3).

Cornish Pirates – tries: 14 Robin Wedlake (17, 32, 57, 62), 12 Callum Patterson (20), 10 Will Cargill (46), 21 Harvey Skinner (78); cons: 10 Will Cargill (17, 20, 32), 21 Harvey Skinner (78); pen: 10 Will Cargill (37).

Referee:   Michael Hudson (RFU)

Attendance:   973


Prop Christian Goes to Saracens On Loan

The Cornish Pirates can confirm that after featuring in the game away at Hartpury RFC on Saturday, prop forward Christian Judge has gone on loan to Saracens for three weeks.


Sarries bound prop Christian Judge. Photo- Brian Tempest

Commenting with reference to the loan agreement, Cornish Pirates’ coach Alan Paver has said:

“Everyone will be aware that Christian has done extremely well for us over the last season, and at the start of the present one. He’s come on leaps and bounds.

“Saracens contacted us and looked at the possibility of Christian supporting their programme and we are delighted to be able to do that. We think it is great exposure for him and again demonstrates that we must be doing something right as a club to produce another very good front-rower.

“We are all very pleased for Christian, however Tyler Gendall has been training well and nipping at his heels, so on his return he will rightly have to fight pretty hard to get his shirt back.”

Posted in Bill's Blog

Week 2 round up of Cornish rugby

In the South West Premier, Camborne celebrated their RFU club accreditation with a 23-20 win against visiting Maidenhead.

After a slow start that saw the Cherry & Whites trail 10-0, Jake Champion got his side on the board with a penalty. The visitors still managed to reach half-time 13-3 to the good.

A great start to the second half saw Champion convert his own try before slotting a penalty to tie up the scores.

Evergreen wing Rhodri McAtee put Camborne ahead with a try, before No.8 Dave Roberts, back helping out the club during the current injury crisis was put in by skipper Jon Drew.

Camborne held out for the win despite a late converted score from Maidenhead.

In Tribute South West 1 West, Launceston confirmed their solid start to the season with a 28-22 win at Polson Bridge against Newent. Will Morton scored his first try for his new club since his move from Saltash over the summer. Further tries were scored by Chae Jenkins (2) and a penalty-try award with Glen Coles adding three conversions.

St. Ives went down 26-22 at Devonport Services despite taking an early lead thanks to Jack Kessell’s try converted by Rhys Brownfield. Ben Taylor got a second try for the Hakes to put them 12-5 up. Half-time arrived with the Hakes 12-8 to the good.

Early in the second half Services moved ahead before St. Ives struck back with a Pete Mabbott try leaving them 1 point adrift.

Services pulled away again, but St. Ives had the final say when Sam Bartle scored on his league debut for the Hakes to give his side a couple of points to bring back across the Tamar.

In London 1 South, London Cornish got back to winning ways with a 26-19 win against Sevenoaks.

Cornish scored tries through Josh Holmes, Matt Hakes and David Chalkley with skipper George Kimmins kicking three penalties and a conversion.

In Western Counties West, there were two Cornish derbies. Falmouth backed up their win at Truro last week with a 20-18 win over Wadebridge Camels, who had Mike Rawlings dismissed in the final ten minutes.

The Eagles scored tries through Trev Ward and Tom Simmons with Matt Horton converting both tries and also slotting a couple of penalties.

For the Camels, Danny Thomas scored a try and converted Will Pengelly’s try, he also added a couple of penalties.

St. Austell also made it two out of two with a 22-19 win at Saltash. Ben Chenoweth, Rory Jago and Jake Carr all crossed for the Saints with Liam Freeman kicking two conversions and a penalty.

For Saltash Lewis Wells and Todd Crofts scored tries with Harrison Reburn landing three penalties.

Elsewhere, Truro got a very good draw at Kingsbridge 15-all. Jack Tidball and Ethan Tyler scored tries for the Goats. Owen Davey kicked a conversion and a penalty.

In the Tribute Cornwall & Devon League, Bude are the only Cornish side with two wins. They followed up their opening day success with a 38-19 win at home against Topsham.

Bude scored six tries through Jason Bolt, Kieran Sharp, Matt Williams, Angus Hodges, Ed Aldridge and Will Kingdon. Ollie Denford kicked four conversions.

Penryn bounced back from their defeat at Plymstock defeating South Molton 40-3 at the Memorial Ground. Tries for the Borough were scored by George Jones, James Salisbury (2), John Falloway, Grant Randlesome and Viv Wilmott. Mitch Vague put over five conversions.

Lanner came out on top against Hayle 36-30 in the first league game played at Mount Ambrose. Adam Harris’ second try of the game clinching the win for the Falcons.

Pirates Amateurs slipped to a second defeat going down at Plymstock 24-18. Aled Prosser and Sam Coogan scored the tries with Steve Evans kicking the other points.

Liskeard-Looe had a fine 39-0 win over Tavistock.

Posted in Bill's Blog

Reds give Taunton the pip


By Bill Hooper, at the Recreation Ground

Redruth took the spoils in this action packed game which could have swung Taunton’s way during a tense finale.

Redruth head coach Pale Nonu was delighted that his young side had shown great maturity. “That was a cracking game of rugby with two sides looking to play an expansive game. We had to defend like Trojans early on as they came at us down the slope, we did well to hold them to just the three points.

“Credit to the boys they played for each other and trusted the systems we put in place. In the second half we played some good rugby scoring some good tries so overall I was delighted with that performance.”

Prior to kick-off there was a minute’s silence in respect of club members who sadly passed away over the summer.

Taunton raced out of the blocks from the whistle putting pressure on Redruth and earning a penalty kicked by fly-half Sam Brown.

The home defence proved up to the task repelling the incessant Titans’ attacks. The siege was lifted with Redruth drawing level thanks to a Richie Kevern penalty.

Redruth had both skipper Matt Gidlow and Craig Williams yellow carded during the opening half hour managing to survive both sin-bins without conceding.

Redruth’s line out, so often an Achilles heel in past seasons was top-draw, with Ed Pascoe and Brad Howe providing some quality ball, to set up some great attacking mauls.



Connor Gilbert over the ball Photo: Dan Barbary

As half-time approached it was Taunton’s turn to lose a player to the bin, lock Milo Reynolds. Redruth turned up the pressure with a string of penalties kicked to the corner with Titans infringing once too often and referee Charles Gayther awarding the home side a penalty-try.

Redruth made a great start to the second half with an unconverted try in the Piggy lane corner scored by flying wing Dean Bonds.

They further increased their lead after centres Connor Gilbert and Jack Simmons put full-back Aaron Simmonds in for a try on his home debut, converted by Kevern giving the Reds what seemed an impressive lead.

Referee Gayther then trotted under the posts awarding Taunton the first of two penalty-tries in their favour awarded during the final ten minutes, setting up an anxious closing few minutes.

Aaron Simmonds adds a conversion – Photo: Dan Barbary

Crucially Redruth made the game safe when James Tucker intercepted to trot in under the posts with Simmonds having assumed kicking duties from the departed Kevern adding the extras.

A tense finally saw Ratu Vakalutukali go over for a his side’s third try but crucially Brown missed the conversion before Charles Gayther awarded Taunton a second penalty try at the death to leave them with two bonus points but happily the Reds with five and the Redruth crowd thrilled by the performance of their young side.


REDRUTH: Simmonds, Bonds, Simmons, Gilbert, Cornish, Kevern (Tucker 69), Oulton, Tompsett (Salt 50), Gidlow (Capt) (Barnes 60), Williams (Tompsett 64), Pascoe, Fox, Stevens (Barnes 17-25)(Prisk 25), Grubb (Stevens 18), Howe.

Replacement (not used): Hallam

Redruth scores: Tries, Penalty-try, Bonds, Simmonds, Tucker, Cons, Kevern, Simmonds, Pen, Kevern.

Yellow Cards: Gidlow (15), Williams (26)


TAUNTON TITANS: Rice, Kolowoski, Fraser, Keay (Nash 43), Struminski, Brown, Webb, Baker, Spurdle (Francis 69), Dalton (Haines 50), Reynolds, England (Harvey 45), Vakalutukali, Hayler, Prior (Oliphant-Thompson 55).

Taunton scores: Tries Kolowoski, Penalty-tries (2), Vakalutukali, Pen Brown.

Yellow Card: Reynolds (36)

REFEREE: Charles Gayther (RFU)

CROWD: 810

St. Austell Brewery Redruth man-of-the-match: Connor Gilbert. The centre broke the line on numerous occasions and help set up Aaron Simmonds try. Tackled like a demon in mid-field.




Posted in Bill's Blog

Pirates make it two from two & maximum points


“Strictly” Sam Matavesi. Hooker has all the moves – Photo: Brian Tempest

Cornish Pirates 35   Coventry 10

Rightfully pleased to have won their 2018/19 Greene King IP Championship opener 31-24 at home against Doncaster Knights the previous weekend, the Cornish Pirates backed up that result with another victory at the Mennaye Field on Sunday, this time 35-10, reports Phil Westren from the Mennaye Field.

In opposition was a very strong Coventry side making a welcome return to the Championship following relegation at the end of the competition’s inaugural 2009-10 season.

The challenge posed by ‘Cov’ was clearly one the Pirates could not take lightly, noting that they had won their Championship opener 20-15 at home to Jersey Reds, and this following an impressive 55-14 pre-season win against Wasps ‘A’. Their squad was also one littered with gifted players, the range including International, Premiership and Championship performers. Former Pirates scrum-half favourite Tom Kessell featured, as did Tongan internationals David Halaifonua, Latu Makaaafi and Jack Ram, plus former ‘All Black’ Sam Tuitupou.

The Cornish Pirates starting XV showed just one change from the line-up that ran out against ‘Donny’, with Harry Strong selected on the left wing.

Making an early statement at scrum time, with four minutes on the clock fly-half Will Cargill duly posted the first points of the afternoon, which resulted from an almost inevitable penalty award to the Pirates.

The Midlanders were quick to respond, however, and following a rampaging run by flanker Ram a penalty of their own was the reward kicked by fly-half Will Maisey.

Here were two sides up for the challenge and keen for points, so an outcome of a try scored for the Pirates by No. 8 Tom Duncan and converted by Cargill was welcome.

Out of my way, Dunky on the charge – Photo: Brian Tempest

Again, the visitors strived to hit back, with Cornishman Kessell going close. The developing threat looked ‘real’, but the Pirates defended well and then managed to work their way productively up-field.

Cargill added his second successful penalty slot and then one more conversion just before the break. The extra two points proving the icing on the cake to a try scored by man-of-the-match Strong, which resulted from good approach work by Duncan and wing Robin Wedlake. It also meant that the Pirates held a more than satisfactory 20-3 points half-time lead.

To be fair to ‘Cov’, the score at the break wasn’t perhaps a true reflection of the game and they had also been disrupted by injuries, therefore another penalty kicked by Cargill on 50 minutes surely added to their woes. Perhaps, but it didn’t show, as Kessell, now playing out of position on the wing, scored a converted try at the scoreboard corner.

Emptying their bench, another score would bring Coventry back in contention, but it didn’t materialise. Indeed, it was the Pirates who for the second week running finished strongly, with the impressive Duncan bagging his second five points of the afternoon and hooker Sam Matavesi then displaying accustomed explosive power to burst over by Newlyn posts. Replacement fly-half added a conversion to the latter’s bonus-point-providing try and, but for some stoic defending near the very end, work for the afternoon was effectively done.

The crowd present had thoroughly enjoyed viewing match action in the sun, with there a definite buzz and good-feel factor about the Pirates at present – and for good reason!

Cornish Pirates:   15 Kyle Moyle, 14 Robin Wedlake, 13 Rory Parata, 12 Callum Patterson, 11 Harry Strong (Matt Evans 72), 10 Will Cargill (Harvey Skinner 67), 9 Alex Day (Alex Schwarz 70); 1 Jack Andrew, 2 Sam Matavesi (Dan Frost 70), 3 Christian Judge (Tyler Gendall 67), 4 Toby Freeman (Danny Cutmore 64), 5 Brett Beukeboom (captain), 6 Josh Caulfield, 7 Matt Bolwell (John Stevens 64), 8 Tom Duncan.

Coventry:   15 David Halaifonua (Peter White 37), Junior Bulumakau, 13 Heath Stevens, (captain), 12 Tony Fenner, 11 James Stokes (Sam Tuitupou 18), 10 Will Maisey, 9 Tom Kessell; 1 James Gibbons (Luc Jeannot 67), 2 Phil Nilsen (Scott Tolmie 48), 3 Phil Boulton (Charlie Beech 48), Tom Jubb, 5 James Voss, 6 Adam Peters, 7 Jack Ram (Ben Nutley (46), 8 Ben Adams (Latu Makaafi 53).


Cornish Pirates – tries: Duncan (2), Strong, Matavesi; cons: Cargill (2), Skinner; pens: Cargill (3).

Coventry – try: Kessell; con: Maisey; pen: Maisey.

Referee:   Simon Harding (RFU)

Attendance:   1648

St. Austell Brewery’s Man-of-the-Match:   Harry Strong

Posted in Bill's Blog

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