All Blacks running into form at right time

Redruth v Launceston 211213Photo – Action from last season’s pre-Christmas derby at Redruth

The Cornish All Blacks 25-15 win over Canterbury at Polson on Saturday made it three wins on the bounce for the East Cornwall side.

Having been on the wrong end of some close calls this season this little run of wins has helped propel the All Blacks up the table and they have now leap-frogged their West Cornwall rivals for the first time this season in the league.

Saturday’s game against Taunton, who have slipped in recent weeks, will be a good measure prior to the Redruth game at Polson on Saturday 20th December kick-off 2:30 pm.

Tries from Ryan Westren, Jamie Salter and Jake Murphy along with the boot of Kieron Lewitt got the All Blacks home against Canterbury.

You can read Suzanne Cleave’s report from the WMN in the link

Conversely, Redruth’s form has dipped in recent weeks. Saturday’s 33-12 reversal at Chinnor was their third game on the trot without picking up any points.

Saturday’s game against Lydney at the Rec is now a vital one, as the Severnsiders are third from bottom just five points behind the Reds with a game in-hand!

Redruth need a moral boosting win prior to their trip to Polson, hopefully Greg Goodfellow and Damien Cook, who both missed the Chinnor trip will be fit to play.

You can read Ed Bawden WMN report in the link.

Three late converted tries by Doncaster Knights has put the Yorkshire side firmly in control of Pool Four in the British and Irish Cup as they staged a remarkable to pip the Cornish Pirates 31-30 at the Mennaye.

Next Saturday’s final pool match against Bedford Blues at Goldington Road kick-off 2pm will determine who finishes runners-up in the pool with hopefully it being sufficient to qualify for the quarter-finals as one of the three best pool runners-up.

You can read Nigel Walrond’s WMN match report in the link.

Ian Davies’ reaction to his side’s defeat in this link.

In the Tribute South West 1West league, Camborne maintained their third place with a hard-fought 28-16 win over North Devon side Bideford at the Rec.

You can read my report on the game via West Briton link.

It was a very emotionally charged day at Tregorrick Park when St. Austell faced Avonmouth Old Boys. Prior to the match both sides observed a one minute silence in memory of St. Austell player Roy Williams who unexpectedly passed away last week.

The Saints then turned on a performance that their former teammate would have been proud of as they defeated the Old Boys 40-25 to alleviate their position in the bottom half of the table. Tries were scored by skipper Miles Davey (2), Ian Venner, Dan Pearce, Alex Welland and Ben Chenoweth with Pearce also adding a couple of penalties and conversions.

In Tribute Western Counties West, a blow to Truro’s promotion hopes as they were beaten 33-14 at St. Clements Hill by Devonport Services,  Luke Tidball and Darren Jacques scored both of Truro’s tries which were converted by “Eggy” Williams.

Penryn had a good win at home against Tavistock 53-7.  Full-back Josh Chambers scored three tries with Mitch Vague and Ben Hoban both bagging a brace each, Matt Williams with Ben Jordan scoring the other tries. Callum Hinchley kicked four conversions.

Wadebridge Camels defeated St. Ives 105-10, scoring seventeen tries in all. Dom Hawkey scored five tries and James Grubb kicked ten conversions.

London Cornish lost their top-of-the-table clash with Tottonians 19-6 in London 2 SW, see Ben Gilbey’s match report in my previous blog post.

In Tribute Cornwall and Devon League, Saltash are level on points with Withycombe at the top of the table following their 34-10 win over Bodmin.

Ashes scored six-tries against Bodmin through Ryan Cruickshanks (2), Ollie Mulberry, Max Veneables, Steve Hillman and Shaun Crawford.

Bodmin scored tries through Pooley and Carter.

Falmouth won 52-0 at Liskeard-Looe, the Eagles scored eight tries through Olly Church, John Tyson, Matt Symons, Nick Carne, Olly Williams, George Hooper, Tom Spiller and Symon Bailey with

Justyn Irons kicking six conversions.

Hayle lost at Honiton 23-8, Rob Rowe with Hayle’s sole try and Scott Harvey with a penalty.

Bude defeated Pirates Amateurs 20-18.

The final games in both Cornwall Leagues 1 & 2; prior to the New Year took place last weekend.

Newquay Hornets failed to pick up maximum points for the first time this season as Camborne School of Mines held them to a 17-22 margin.

Veor kept the pressure up in second place with a 58-0 win over bottom-of-the-table Roseland.

Illogan Park won 46-21 at Helston, whilst Stithians had a walkover against Perranporth.

In Cornwall 2, Lanner won 59-12 at Lankelly-Fowey to remain top. St. Agnes defeated St. Just in the far tip of Cornwall 54-7, whilst Camelford beat Redruth Albany 20-5.

Finally best wishes to Truro School Old Boy Tom Pascoe who has been chosen by Cambridge University to play at hooker in the 133 rd Varsity Match this Thursday against Oxford University at Twickenham. The game will be reffed by Devon’s Luke Pearce.

Posted in Bill's Blog


Totts too hot to handle!

London Cornish 6-19 Tottonians

Report and Photos by Ben Gilby

It was Tottonians who emerged with the spoils from the top of the table London Two South-West clash at The REMPF on Saturday.

The early exchanges were a serious arm-wrestle as these two sides tested each other out – a series of scrums and line-outs finally ended after seven minutes. Cornish were penalised for holding on, and, with the referee playing advantage, Totts put down a major marker by launching an impressive driving maul – something ‘The Exiles’ had not been on the receiving end of this season – as the ball came out, Robbie Searle kicked through, but Robin Heymann managed to end the immediate danger by putting the ball down behind his own line. The referee brought play back for the infringement and Searle’s penalty was successful.

lc v totts 3 aPhoto – Cornish skipper Dave Theobald on the charge

Cornish responded well, and launched a period of attacks on the Tottonians line. The visitors could only halt a succession of pick and drives with the concession of a penalty. Phil Dale kicked to touch for a 5m line-out. The visitors snaffled the ball and cleared. However, from a following lineout, Luke Spells fed Phil Dale who took the ball into a maul. Tottonians managed to steal the ball, but knocked-on in doing so. Cornish were awarded the penalty, which Luke Spells kicked to level the scores.

The Black & Golds continued to have the upper hand, with Rich Skinnard making several twinkle-toed runs, and he was combining well with Phil Dale. From one Dale cross-kick, Skinnard was just unable to reach the ball, but play was brought back for a penalty on the ‘22’ to the right of centre, which Spells kicked to give Cornish the lead.

As the game reached the half-hour mark, Tottonians began to establish a foothold. Their lock Ali Ramus, who had played National League rugby for Havant, went barrelling down the right wing. The referee adjudged he was halted illegally, and Robbie Searle stepped up, 18m out, to the left of centre, but he inexplicably missed.

Cornish were now forced into defensive mode. Once more the Hampshire side targeted the right hand side of the pitch, but Cornish managed to grab the ball. Healey’s attempted clearance kick was charged down and Tottonians moved across the pitch, pounding the Cornish line. The defence kept the line intact, but at the cost of a penalty concession. Searle kicked to touch 5m out. From the resulting line-out the Black and Golds pushed back the Totts tide and brilliantly won a penalty to clear.

lc v totts 1 aPhoto – Cornish’s Mark Osei-Tutu looking to break out of defence

The final action of the half saw another Totts attack with full-back Bart van Herwijnen breaking several tackles, but his pass only found the touch line. From the resulting line-out, a quite outrageous hand off by Will Carew-Gibbs found Luke Bridges, who in turn fed Matt Hakes, but the move broke down. The half-time whistle followed with Cornish leading 6-3.

The second period opened with Tottonians still in the ascendancy. Lock Ali Ramus led an impressive drive. His ball found Mike Searle, with the referee now playing advantage for Cornish offside. Searle drove for the line, but Cornish defence heroically held him up. Play came back for the penalty, but Robbie Searle missed the kick. However, ‘The Exiles’ line only remained intact for another four minutes. Robbie Searle was now in imperious form – a great kick through saw the ball bounce through the Cornish defence and Searle touched down in the far left hand corner. He managed to add the conversion from an acute angle as Totts went 10-6 in front.

The game was now almost exclusively being played in the Cornish half, but the home side were standing up to the pressure well. Totts’ Dan Stokes fed Robbie Searle, but a great tackle from Rich Skinnard stopped him in his tracks. Shortly afterwards, with Cornish mounting an attack they were penalised for holding on, and Robbie Searle stepped up from 40m out to send the ball between the posts to extend the visitors’ lead to 13-6.

Cornish captain Dave Theobald rallied his troops, and there was an immediate response as the game entered the final fifteen minutes. Luke Spells led a great run down the right, which came to an end with a knock on, but, with advantage being played, Cornish maintained their forward push. For the first time they got a driving maul going, pushing the Hampshire visitors back a real distance, but once more a handling error ended the move. From the resulting penalty, Totts moved the ball around at speed before earning a further penalty 5m from touch, some 20m from the posts which Searle kicked to extend his side’s lead to ten points.

lc v totts 2 aPicture – Cornish winger Matt Hakes tackled by Tottonians’ defence

As the game entered its final period, Cornish began to press, showing character, but they never quite got their usual attacking game going, and consequently the only remaining try scoring chances went Totts way as the visitors gathered possession from a clearance kick attempt, but immense defence from ‘The Exiles’ saved the day. In the final exchanges, Cornish got another maul going, but just as progress looked to be made, Totts earned a penalty which Searle kicked, five metres out from touch.

Posted in Bill's Blog


Pirates keep Cup hopes alive

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Photo Jake Woodward scoring Cornwall Under 20’s second try on Sunday – Photo Iktis photo

The Cornish Pirates kept their British and Irish Cup hopes alive with a vital Friday night in at Pandy Park against Cross Keys 31-20.

Pirates scored four tries to take the bonus point through Paul and Jack Andrew, Joel Conlon and Rob Andrew. Kieran Hallett’s boot added the other points.

It nicely sets up SATURDAY’S encounter with Doncaster Knights at the Mennaye.

Bill Sobey’s match report can be found in the link.

Ian Davies’ reaction can be found in the link here.

In National League 2 South, a last-gasp conversion from Kieron Lewitt gave the All Blacks a good win at Old Elthamians 20-18 tries from Ed Holmes and Jake Murphy and Lewitt’s boot did the business for Launceston who had the rub of the green for once in their favour with last minute kicks deciding the game.

Read Conrad Sutcliffe’s report from the WMN in the link

Redruth were beaten by a very good Dorking side 38-12 at the Recreation Ground. The visitors who came up last season are the latest club from the South East who look set to power their way up through the leagues. On this performance they will push Henley Hawks all the way for the automatic promotion berth.

You can read my report in the link.

In Tribute South West 1 West, Camborne were undone by a last minute converted try at Avonmouth Old Boys 16-14. Town led 14-9 thanks to three penalties from Alex Ducker and a Sam Bartle try with seconds left, the ball went over the Camborne line with Richie Kevern appearing to touch the ball down however an Avonmouth player dived on the ball and claimed a try awarded by the referee, the conversion rubbed salt into the wound!

St. Austell lost their re-arranged game with fellow strugglers Cullompton at Tregorrick 29-15. It was not a happy weekend for the Saints as on Friday they learnt of the passing of one of their players Roy Williams. Thoughts go out to his family and friends.

There were a couple of re-arranged game in the Cornwall and Devon League. Hayle travelled to OPMs and won 21-12. Lions points came via Scott Harvey, who kicked three penalties and a conversion, along with a penalty-try award and one from Rob Cutter.

Bodmin lost at home to Crediton 22-13.

In Tribute Cornwall League 1, Newquay Hornets’ game at Stithians was abandoned with the Hornets leading 5-3 after the referee was injured during the first half.

Veor remain second following their 42-14 win at Helston .

Camborne School of Mines are now level on points with Illogan Park as they won 50-10 at Paynters Lane.

Perranporth got a much needed win defeating Roseland 46-22 at Ponsmere Valley.

In Tribute Cornwall League 2, Lanner comforted their top spot with a 45-0 win over Camelford at Trevarth.

Redruth Albany notched up their first league win of the season defeating St. Just 17-15 at Trewirgie.

The Tribute Cornwall Cup outstanding quarter-finals were settled in differing manner, whilst Truro beat Pirates Amateurs in an exciting game at St. Clements Hill on Saturday 24-18. Penryn were awarded a walkover when Bude pulled out of their tie in mid-week.

The semi-final line up is ;

Camborne v Truro

Penryn v St. Austell

As you will have seen in previous blog entries Cornwall under 20s defeated their Gloucestershire counterparts 34-21 at Camborne on Sunday.

Sad news this week that former Exeter Chiefs’ hooker Neil Clark has been forced to retire.

A proud Helstonian Clarky has been playing in France with Top 14 side Oyonnox.

You can read his story here in the link.

Posted in Bill's Blog


Morgan delighted with Cornish win

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By Bill Hooper at Camborne Rec. Photos by Simon Bryant Iktis photo.

Cornwall Under 20’s great start to this season’s County Championship campaign was just the tonic the squad needed and put to rest the disappointment felt by those involved last season.

No question that the 50-19 defeat by Gloucestershire at the same ground last March was a result that had clawed in the Cornish camp over the summer.

The result and the performance was just what coach Ian Morgan and the rest of the Cornwall coaches Mike Rawlings and Bryn Jenkins dreamed of. Morgan spoke after the game: “We couldn’t have scripted a better start, we knew Gloucestershire would come at us from the off and we spoke of dominating the opening period during the warm up but to go 17-0 up after 15 minutes was the dream start for us and to be fair they didn’t look like threatening us until they made a couple of changes and we conceded a soft try towards half-time.”

???????????????????????????????????????????Photo – Camel Jake Woodward dives in for try number two

“We controlled the game really well, our forwards went well and I was pleased to see our backs looking so sharp, there were times when we fell foul of the referee but I think that was more of a timing issue we were so keen to get out of the blocks. We had a couple of players in the bin, but I felt that Gloucestershire were fortunate not to lose at least one player to the bin on the ‘tip-tackle’ that wasn’t called.”

Morgan was delighted with the performance of Redruth fly-half Dan Rutter who ran the game: “I thought Dan had a very good game for us he kicked us into position at fly-half and then moved to scrum-half when Zac Noeda was binned, he showed great control and maturity and was one of our standout players today he’s got a level head on him and his vision of the game is excellent.”

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Photo – All Black Tom Sandercock dives in at Camborne’s West Bank for try number four

However, it was Camborne flanker Neil Stanleick who picked up the most plaudits: “He is an awesome player he just keeps going forward all the time, he is player with a great potential who could well have a very good career in years to come.”

“Skipper Todd Prisk and hooker Locryn Williams also had big games today, whilst Rhys Brownfield in the centre kicked well and took his try very well.”

???????????????????????????????????????????Photo – Pirates Amateurs Rhys Brownfield kicks another successful conversion

“Now we have a little bit of break before we take on Devon, we will have another game with Camborne School of Mines in the New Year to get us back together and then a few training sessions to get the preparations right for Ivybridge.”

Posted in Bill's Blog


Clinical Cornwall Exact Gloucestershire Revenge

???????????????????????????????????????????PHOTOS By Simon Bryant Iktis photo

Cornwall took a first step in this season’s Under 20 County Championship with an impressive win over their conquerors in last season’s quarter-finals with a bonus point win at Camborne.

That defeat last March by 50-19 hurt and it was a wound that skipper Todd Prisk wanted to put right this time round. “They came down here last season and embarrassed us, it’s something I have wanted to put right and today it was pleasing to put the record straight and get their monkey off our backs.

“Preparation has been good this season, our sessions at Truro College have been good the players have brought into the ethos the coaching and support staff have really made things good for us.

“We felt we were good enough and so it showed with our great start and we just seemed to build on it. We stuck to our game plan and kept the tempo high.

“We had little blip in the second half when we lost two players to the bin but that seemed to make us stronger and we rode the storm.

???????????????????????????????????????????Photo – Cornwall skipper Todd Prisk with Dan Rutter in support

“I felt that some of the tries we scored today were real quality, Neil Stanleick and Locryn Williams carried great ball with Dan Rutter putting us in good field postions, hopefully we will take this into our next game against Devon in January.

Playing up the slope first half Cornwall got off to a great start with an early try. A penalty kicked to the top corner by Rutter saw the catch-and-drive and when the ball was moved wide centre Rhys Brownfield carved through to score.

The Pirates Amateurs player was on target soon after with a penalty success to put Cornwall 10-0 up.

???????????????????????????????????????????Photo – Rhys Brownfield dots down Cornwall 1st try

Cornwall continued to dominate the first quarter and it was no surprise that they increased their lead when a Rutter kick was half charged down but fell into the arms of winger Jake Woodward who scored Cornwall’s second try with Brownfield again on the money with the extras.

Gloucestershire made a couple of changes in their front row which helped steady the ship and they got back into the game with a try from centre Tom Francis with fly-half Jack Sterry making it a seven point score to leave the score at halftime 17-7 to the black and golds.

Cornwall suffered an early blow in the second half when scrum-half Zac Noeda was yellow-carded following the home side’s repeat infringements.

The Cornish lads carried on taking the game to the visitors with a storming run from Stanleick seeing the No.8 held up over the line.

From the five-metre scrum, Rutter who had moved to scrum-half, scampered over in the scoreboard corner for an unconverted try.

???????????????????????????????????????????Photo – hooker Locryn Williams makes good ground

Cornwall were then briefly down to thirteen men as lock Dan Marsh was yellow carded for a tip tackle, however Cornwall scored another try as the game entered the final quarter, a good run by hooker Locryn Williams saw the ball moved wide for replacement Tom Sandercock to score another unconverted in the West Bank corner.

There was further Cornish joy as man-of-the-match Stanleick made another rbreak with Woodward in support to put centre Jack Simmons in for Cornwall’s fifth try with Brownfield adding the conversion for a 34-7 lead.

Gloucestershire, as you would expect, didn’t let their heads drop and came back in final stages to score a couple of tries through replacements Tom Davies and Ewan Bulger both converted by Francis to leave Cornwall 34-21 victors.

Next up for Cornwall, Devon at Ivybridge, on Sunday 25th January.

Cornwall 34 pts

Tries – Brownfield, Woodward, Rutter, Sandercock, Simmons, Conversions – Brownfield (3), Penalty – Brownfield

Yellow Cards – Noeda (44), Marsh (52)

Gloucestershire 21 pts

Tries – Francis, Davies Bulger, Conversions – Sterry, Francis (2)

Cornwall : T Eley, L Thomas (both Truro), J Simmons (Hartpury Coll), R Brownfield (Pirates Ams), J Woodward (Wadebridge Camels), D Rutter (Redruth), Z Noeda; J Martin (both Truro), L Williams (St Austell), J Tyack (Redruth), T Prisk (Redruth, capt), D Marsh (Truro), A Hughes (Penryn), J Haines (Cornish All Blacks), N Stanleick (Camborne).

Replacements: S Furse (Newquay Hornets) for Hughes 47, R Stevens (Hayle) for Martin 54, T Sandercock (Cornish All Blacks) for Noeda 58, T Pellow (Penryn) for Haines 67, J Tyler (Penzance-Newlyn Colts) for Thomas 67, T-L Southworth (Redruth) for Tyack 73. Not used: O Williams (Falmouth).

Referee Zerran Bell (Devon RRS)

Crowd: 450

Cornwall-man-of-the-match: Neil Stanleick carried, carried, carried all day long, tremendous performance from the Camborne back rower.

Posted in Bill's Blog


Pirates in nine try romp

Cornish Pirates head-coach Ian Davies had called for a big performance from his squad following the disappointing defeat to Nottingham in their last home game.

His charges certainly answered the call with a 65-14 win against the Bedford Blues with all nine tries scored by backs.

Amongst those to cross the whitewash was scrum-half Tom Kessell playing his 100th game for the Pirates.

Cornish Pirates v Leeds Carnegie 200913

The win lifts the Cornish Pirates up to 8th in the Championship table, as the league program has a break for three weeks with the resumption on Friday night of the British & Irish Cup and a trip to Pandy Park to take on Cross Keys.

You can read Bill Sobey’s match report in the link.

In National League 2 South, the Cornish All Blacks defeated Clifton 23-16 thanks to tries from lock Ed Holmes and fly-half Billy Searle and the trusty boot of Kieron Lewitt.

You can read Suzanne Cleave’s match report from the WMN in the link.

Redruth fought a rear-guard action at leaders Henley Hawks before going down 17-3, the Reds sole points came from a Bertie Hopkin penalty.

You can read Ed Bawden’s match report in the link

In Tribute South West 1 West, frustration for Camborne as their game at Avonmouth Old Boys was called off due to a water-logged pitch on Saturday morning as the Cherry and Whites were en-route!

St. Austell took a losing bonus point from their trip to Thornbury where the homeside won 27-21. Saints’ tries were scored by Alex Welland, Callum Wilson and Cavan Boyer with Dan Pearce kicking all three conversions.

In Tribute Western Counties West, Wadebridge Camels put a spoke in Truro’s promotion bid with a 34-23 win at the Molesworth Field.

Will Pengelly, Richard Treleaven, Dan Briskham (2) and Ben Hawken scored the Camels’ tries with James Grubb adding three conversions and a penalty.

For Truro Jake Champion crossed for a couple of tries both converted by “Eggy” Williams who also kicked three penalties.

St. Ives notched up their second win of the season defeating Wellington 26-20 at Alexandra Road. Ben Taylor, Tom Chandler, Tom Nicholas and Neil Corin crossed for the Hakes with Niall Prisk adding three conversions.

Penryn slumped to a 26-0 defeat at Okehampton.

London Cornish remain top of London 2 SW following their 19-16 win at Old Alleynians.

In Tribute Cornwall and Devon League, Saltash remain top after defeating South Molton 32-0. Sean Crawford, Max Venables (3), Ryan Cruickshanks and Steve Hillman scored tries for the Ashes with Veneables adding a conversion.

Withycombe remain second on points difference after defeating Hayle 39-3. Dan McGee with Hayle’s sole points from a penalty.

Pirates Amateurs are fourth in the league following their 27-19 win at Bodmin.

Bude slipped up at home to Paignton 22-12, whilst Liskeard-Looe woes continued at Exeter Saracens 61-5.

In Tribute Cornwall 1, Newquay Hornets march back to the Cornwall and Devon League continues following their 42-0 win at Roseland. Frazer Kellythorn helped himself to a hat-trick of tries in Hornets’ six-try haul.

Illogan Park moved up to second following their 26-12 win at Stithians, while School of Mines defeated Helston at Penryn 55-17.

Veor conceded their match to Perranporth.

In Tribute Cornwall 2, just the one game was played, leaders Lanner winning 46-8 at St. Just.

Camelford were awarded the points against Lankelly-Fowey.

The International series continued with Cornish interest. On Friday night Josh Matavesi played for Fiji in their 20-14 over the USA in Vannes, Brittany.

On Saturday former Cornish Pirate Blair Cowan was Scotland’s man-of-the-match in their 37-12 win over Tonga in Kilmarnock.

Cornish Pirate Aaron Carpenter played for Canada in their 18-9 defeat in Bucharest to Romania, both these sides will meet again in pool D of the Rugby World Cup next year.

Ireland certainly had a great autumn with wins against the Boks and the Wallabies.

Reminder Cornwall Under 20 play their first Championship game next Sunday at Camborne kick-off 2:30 pm against Gloucestershire (see previous blog entry).

On a sadder note, former Exeter Chief hooker – and Cornishman – Neil Clark, who has recently being playing his rugby in France at Top 14 side Oyonnox, has been forced to retire from the game. We wish him well for the future.

Posted in Bill's Blog


Cornwall Under 20’s name side to face Gloucestershire in County opener

Cornwall Rugby Football Union Under 20s 2014/15 County Championship campaign begins on Sunday 30 November.

Following a trial session at Truro RFC, the Under 20’s have trained for the last 6 weekends sometimes in atrocious weather in preparation for their first game against Gloucestershire at Camborne RFC with a 2.30 pm kick off.

CRFU President John Grindle said,This is the first game at this level for some of the team and they start with a tough game. I want to thank the coaching team of Ian Morgan, Mike Rawlings, Bryn Jenkins and team manager Chris Lea for their work in pulling together the team.” He went on to say, “I would also like to thank Camborne for hosting the game, Kelsall Steele for their sponsorship of the match shirts, along with ITEC our programme sponsors.”

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Cornwall face one other game in the group stages on January 25th against Devon at Ivybridge and depending on results, are hoping for a quarter-final place to be played in February.

Coach Ian Morgan said, “We have a young squad who have trained well and in good numbers on Sunday mornings in Truro. They now face a stern test against a strong Gloucestershire squad.”

Coach Mike Rawlings said, “It is testament to the guys who have trained on Sunday mornings after games for their own clubs on the Saturday. They have trained hard and know they face a difficult task, but they will be extremely proud to pull on the famous black and gold shirt of Cornwall. ”

15. Recycled ball 2

CRFU Chair Denis Preece said, “This is the first opportunity for some of these players to represent Cornwall at senior level. A number of the players, who have gone before them, have gone on to represent the full County XV and some have played at Twickenham!!”

Cornwall Under 20 team manager Chris Lea said, “This squad is a mixture of players from last season, new players nominated from clubs and guys who have progressed through the Under 18 age group. It is great to see these guys getting progression through the County system and a number of former players are now playing at Premiership and Championship level, as well as clubs within Cornwall.”

Cornwall: Tom Eley (Truro), Konnor Ewudzi (St. Austell), Jack Simmons (Hartpury Coll), Rhys Brownfield (Pirates Ams), Jake Woodward (Wadebridge Camels), Dan Rutter (Redruth), Zac Noeda (Truro); Jay Tyack (Redruth), Locryn Williams (St. Austell), Tommy Phillips (Redruth), Todd Prisk (Redruth, Capt), Dan Marsh (Truro), Adam Hughes (Penryn), John Haines (Cornish All Blacks), Neil Stanleick (Camborne).

Replacements (from): Sam Furse (Newquay Hornets), Joe Martin (Truro), Russell Stevens (Hayle), Tony Pellow (Penryn), Ollie Williams (Falmouth), Tom Sandercock (Cornish All Blacks), Lewis Thomas (Redruth), Sam Rodda (Newquay Hornets), Adam Smith (Redruth), John Tyler (Penzance & Newlyn Colts).

Coaches – Ian Morgan, Mike Rawlings, Bryn Jenkins

Team Manager – Chris Lea

Posted in Bill's Blog


Cornish are pitch perfect!

OLD ALLEYNIANS 16-19 LONDON CORNISH

London Cornish stay top of London Two South-West after a hard fought 19-16 win at Old Alleynians, reports Ben Gilby

On a damp, dank afternoon in Dulwich, ‘The Exiles’ had to work hard to ensure they left with a victory.

Cornish came into this game having not conceded a try in four games, and, in total only nine points in this period. They were under no illusions as to the task that faced them at Old Alleyians though, with the ‘Old Boys’ being the only side to lower Tottonians’ colours in the league this season.

The build-up to the game saw Cornish forced into making late changes to their starting line-up as Craig Chatley was injured in the warm-up. This could have resulted in a slow start for the visitors, but to their credit, ‘The Exiles’ took the lead after just three minutes, when, following early pressure, they were awarded a penalty which Luke Spells successfully kicked. With a light shower beginning to fall, the ball became very tough to handle, and it was very much an even-stevens period. Alleynians showed great pace on the wings, with Gareth Wynn making the yards, before a Cornish infringement, and Paul O’Connor levelled the scores after ten minutes.

OA V LC 2a

Pic Chris Anstey puts in a big hit on OA player

Crucially, the Black & Golds hit back and, with the forwards in clear control of matters, Alleynians were forced backwards before the ball was zipped out by Rob Healey who found the impressive Phil Dale who dived over in the far right hand corner for his third try in four games to re-establish the lead. Spells’ conversion attempt from a tight angle missed.

With the benefit of the slope, Alleynians had the best of the second quarter, and two successful penalties by Paul O’Connor saw them take a wafer-thin 9-8 lead at the break. Cornish knew there were plenty of opportunities in the second half as, on the occasions that they had got forward momentum, the home side found it hard to contain them.

Yet, it was the home side who made the strongest start as a great move at pace resulted in Jake Smith dotting down, with O’Connor adding the conversion to increase their lead to 16-8. Once more, Cornish responded to the concession of points positively. After an attack, a penalty was earned, but Spells’ attempt missed. The momentum continued though and the forwards began to force Alleynians back into their ten metres on a regular basis. A series of line-outs and drives resulted in Ben Ievers grounding the ball just in from the left-hand touch-line. The conversion attempt from Luke Spells missed, but Cornish were now right back in it.

Alleynians had their chances sporadically, but Cornish had the upper hand. They were regularly repelled by quite outstanding defence from the home side. The pressure finally told and led to the concession of a penalty which Spells kicked on 65 minutes.

OA V LC 2015 1a

Pic – Rob Healey looks to get his back-line on the move

Old Alleynians won a penalty shortly afterwards, but O’Connor, who kicked well all afternoon, crucially missed. Back came Cornish, who laid siege to the home side’s line. The sheer determination to grind out a result was there for all to see, as the sensational vocal support from the Cornish fans got ever louder. As the game moved into stoppage time, Alleynians could hold back the tide no longer, and conceded a penalty in front of the posts. Luke Spells made the kick, and the game was won.

Whilst Cornish may not have been at their best, it was desire and sheer will to win that got them over the line. Massive respect has to go to Old Alleynians who were impressively stubborn opposition. Equally impressive was the large number of Black & Gold clad support, which surely outnumbered the home support. The 1st XV now focus in on their next game in a fortnight – a massive top of the table clash with Tottonians at The REMPF.

Posted in Bill's Blog


No reward for Pirates up North

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Photo – Ben Priddey scored two of Redruth’s six tries against Dings

Despite the counter attraction of International rugby on the television, there was still plenty of great local rugby to get out and watch last weekend.

The Cornish Pirates saw a losing bonus point snatched from their grasp with last gasp penalty at Clifton Lane against Rotherham Titans it finished 21-13!

That latest defeat sees the Pirates slip back to second from bottom in the Championship table seven points ahead of Plymouth Albion.

The Christmas clash at Brickfields will be very interesting!

You can read Nigel Walrond’s match report in the link here.

Reaction from coaches Gavin Cattle and Alan Paver in the link here.

I saw a very entertaining game at the Recreation Ground where Redruth overcame a dogged Dings Crusaders side 36-25 in a game of nine tries.

Bearing in mind that Dings are currently bottom of National League 2 South it just shows that all sides are competitive in this league.

You can read my match report in the link.

The Cornish All Blacks looked to have staged a remarkable comeback at Cambridge after they trailed 21-0 after just 12 minutes!

A red card for Cambridge skipper Stefan Liebenberg gave the All Blacks a sniff of a comeback, which they did before another last gasp penalty consigned them to another single point defeat.

You can read Conrad Sutcliffe’s match report from the WMN in the link.

In Tribute South West 1 West, Camborne edged closer to the top two with a 37-27 win at the Rec against Thornbury.

A brace of tries from skipper Steve Kenward plus scores from Taron Peacock, Rob Floyd and Alex Ducker – back in the Cherry and White fold after a brief sojourn at the Pirates – gave Town maximum points. Kevin Mankee added 12 points with the boot.

St. Austell are on the up following another good win at home against Wells 31-25. Jack Grigg, Miles Davey, Dan Johns Paul Winterbottom and Liam Freeman all scored tries for the Saints with Dan Pearce kicking three conversions.

In Tribute Western Counties West, Truro maintained their third place with a 62-7 over St. Ives at St. Clements Hill.

Tries for Truro were scored by Jake Champion (2), Adam Gayton (2), Rikki Brandon, Luke Trescothick (2), Ben Teasdale, Luke Tidball and Ross Denning. Craig Williams kicked six conversions.

For the Hakes Tom Chandler got a try converted by Niall Prisk.

Penryn went down at home to Kingsbridge 29-3. Jake Seviour with the Borough’s only points.

Wadebridge Camels picked up a losing bonus point at Torquay were they lost 33-27. Tom Rowe, Jamie Lumb and Chris Humphries scored the Camels’ tries, with Jamie Grubb kicking the other points.

This Saturday Wadebridge entertain Truro!

In London 2 SW, London Cornish remain top of the table following a 20-0 win against Old Reigatian. Mark Osei-Tutu, Joe Skinnard and Rob Healey with Luke Spells kicking a conversion and penalty.

In Tribute Cornwall & Devon League we have new leaders, Saltash. The Ashes defeated former table toppers Withycombe at Moorlands 37-35.

There is a match report from the Plymouth Herald in the link.

Pirates Amateurs got back to winning ways defeating South Molton 50-10 at the Mennaye.

Nick Hitchings (3), Steve Kent, Jack Lonsdale, Rhys Brownfield and Danny Toolan scored the Ams tries with Brownfield kicking the other points.

Bude’s game at OPM’s was abandoned when the referee walked off the pitch with 12 minutes to go following abuse aimed at the referee from the touchline! OPM’s led 16-7 at the time. We await to see if the result will stand or the game is ordered to be re-played!!

Hayle defeated Falmouth in a Cornish derby 25-13. Damien Lynes, Alex Thornton and a penalty try award made up the Lion’s three tries with Dan Magee kicking the other points.

Rob Fitzpatrick scored the Eagles only try with Justyn Irons kicking the other points.

Bodmin lost at Paignton 44-14. Jamie Taylor and Jon Trevarthan scored Bodmin’s tries both converted by Taylor.

Liskeard-Looe’s miserable season continues as they lost 57-0 at Lux Park to Crediton.

In Tribute Cornwall 1, Newquay Hornets win at nearest rivals Veor 22-11 maintains their 100% record.

Third place Illogan Park defeated Perranporth 45-14, whilst Camborne School of Mines had the better of Stithians 68-12. Helston defeated bottom side Roseland 36-3.

In Tribute Cornwall 2, just the one game played as St. Just conceded to Camelford. A top of the table clash ended in a 21 all draw at Trevarth between Lanner and St. Agnes. Lanner remain top on points difference.

Congratulations to Cornish Pirates duo Gavin Cattle and Alan Paver who played in the Armistice Day game at Bath for the Barbarians against Combined Services, for whom Penryn’s Kye Beasley came on during the second half.

Great to see Josh Matavesi playing at fly-half for Fiji against Wales in Cardiff last Saturday, a close game saw Wales sneak it 17-13.

Also former Pirate Blair Cowan had big game for Scotland against New Zealand at Murrayfield, the All Blacks snuck out the win 24-16.

As ever I keep an eye on rugby in Brittany and with Vannes going well in their pool in Fédérale 1, it was good to learn that Comite de Bretagne side defeated last season’s finalists Bourgogne 20-12 at Viry Chatillon in the Coupe des Fédérations – the French equivalent of the County Championships.

There was a Cornishman involved Tom Parker who currently plays at Vannes played for Brittany.  Brittany will play their quarter-final in December.

Posted in Bill's Blog


Good weekend if you’re an All Black!

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Dave Pascoe in action for the Combined Services last season against the Barbarians – Photo Simon Bryant Iktis photo

It proved to be an excellent weekend for teams wearing a black shirt whether internationally or local.

Whilst the Kiwi’s were laying down a marker ahead of next year’s Rugby World Cup at Twickenham defeating tournament hosts England 24-21, the Cornish All Blacks finally put an end to a losing run defeating Worthing 29-19 at Polson Bridge, a fitting tribute to former Launceston & County President John Fry who sadly passed away this week.

Kieron Lewitt notched up a total of 24 points with a try, five penalties and a couple of conversions. Chris Chew scored the other try for the All Blacks.

Read Suzanne Cleave’s match report from the WMN in the link

In the other National League 2 South game played, disappointment for Redruth who for the first time this season failed to pick up any league points from a game as they lost at Shelford 31-11.

The Reds’ points from a Greg Goodfellow try and a couple of penalties by Ashley Hosking.

Redruth will look to bounce back at the Rec next Saturday when they entertain bottom side Dings Crusaders.

Ed Bawden’s WMN report in the link

There were just two re-arranged games in Tribute Western Counties West, Truro had all five points in the bag before a ball was kicked in their game at St. Clements Hill against Tiverton as the Devon side travelled with just one recognised prop!

In a game played with un-contested scrums Tiverton “won” 17-0

Penryn won their re-played game at Torquay Athletic 32-13 with George Jones scoring two of their five tries.

There were two Tribute Cornwall Cup quarter-finals played on Saturday, holders Camborne were given a stiff test at Clifden Park before progressing at the expense of Bodmin 36-18.

Town’s tries were scored by Grant Thirlby, Rob Floyd, James Goldsworthy, Callum Moyle, Neil Stanleick and Cameron Bone with Dave Mankee slotting three conversions.

Ali McPhee and Mark Trevarthan scored tries for Bodmin with Jamie Taylor kicking the rest of the points.

St. Austell overcame Wadebridge Camels at Tregorrick 30-21 to also make the semi-finals.

Saints’ tries came from Darren Pellow, Callum Wilson, Ben Chenoweth and Rob Jeffs with Dan Pearce kicking a couple of conversions and a penalty, whilst Liam Freeman dropped a goal.

For the Camels, Mark Grubb Gary Gynn and Will Pengelly scored tries with Danny Thomas adding all three conversions.

The draw for the semi-finals which will be played in the New Year is;

Camborne v Truro / Pirates Amateurs

Bude / Penryn v St. Austell

The two outstanding quarter-final ties are due to take place on Saturday 29th November.

In the RFU Intermediate Cup London SE, London Cornish progressed to the next round after defeating Portsmouth 62-0.

There was a full program in both Tribute Cornwall 1 and 2, in Tribute 1 Newquay Hornets continued their run with 43-7 win against Illogan Park.

Veor consolidated their second place with a 26-10 win at Stithians.

Perranporth defeated Helston 24-10 at Ponsmere Valley and Roseland got the better of Camborne School of Mines 31-28 at Philleigh.

In Cornwall 2, St. Agnes lead the way following their 78-3 win against Lankelly-Fowey, whilst second place Lanner won 100-0 against Redruth Albany at Trewirgie.

On Sunday the Cornish Pirates slipped to a home defeat in the Greene King RFU Championship 28-13 against Nottingham.

It was a disappointing performance from the Pirates and they will be looking to bounce back next week against Rotherham in Yorkshire.

You can read Bill Sobey’s match report and Ian Davies’ comments in the links.

No Jack Nowell in the England team last Saturday against New Zealand but he is back with the squad preparing for next Saturday’s game against South Africa.

A shoulder injury kept Josh Matavesi out for the Fiji side that lost 40-15 to France in Marseille on Saturday evening, he too is back in the mix for Fiji next match against Wales.

Former Pirate Blair Cowan played for Scotland in their 41-31 win over Argentina at Murrayfield.

Both Gavin Cattle and Alan Paver from the Cornish Pirates will play for the Barbarians on Armistice Day at Bath’s Recreation Ground against the Combined Services.

Four Naval personnel from RNAS Culdrose feature in the Combined Services side which will once again be captained at scrum-half by Penryn’s Dave Pascoe.

Prop Kye Beasley (Penryn), hooker Ben Priddey (Redruth) and lock Marsh Cormack (Taunton) make up the quartet.

Posted in Bill's Blog


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