No doubt that the game of the weekend in the southwest was the derby match played at Sandy Park between the unbeaten Exeter Chiefs and the Cornish Pirates in the Championship.
The Devon side reached the half-way mark of the regular season with another win their eleventh over their Cornish rivals winning a hard fought match 22-15. The Pirates at least had the satisfaction of taking a bonus point back across the border thanks to five penalties from fly-half Rob Cook and denying the Chiefs a try-scoring bonus point.
Mark Stevens report from the WMN can be found here
Next weekend it’s the start of the British and Irish Cup with Scottish side Gael Force visiting Camborne to face the Pirates.
In National League 1, the CornishAll Blacks gave Esher a right old tussle at Polson only going down by 10-6 against the league’s pace-setters. Tony Yapp kicking the All Blacks’ penalties.
Redruth were once more on the wrong end of a tight match losing 22-20 at Stourbridge. Lewis Vinnicombe (2) and Mark Bright scored the Reds’ tries with Brett Rule adding a conversion and a penalty.
A week’s break now in National League 1, which will no doubt be most welcome by the players.
In the Tribute regional leagues, in South West 1 West, St. Ives looked on course for a win over Avonmouth OB’s with 15 minutes to go of their game at Alexandra Rd leading 20-7, but at the final whistle the Hakes were left wondering what had happened as the Bristol side took the spoils 21-20! Ashley Weston, Nick Hitchen and Tim McBride scored tries for the Hakes with Ian Morgan kicking a conversion and a penalty.
In Western Counties West, Camborne are the new leaders, thanks to a fine win at Tavistock 13-8 and the fact that previous leaders Kingsbridge’s match at Okehampton was called off. A Tom Notman try and the boot of Dave Mankee saw the Cherry & Whites home.
In the latest Cornish derby at this level, Wadebridge Camels leap-frogged Truro after their 24-3 win at St. Clements to go third. Matt Ballard (2) Shaun Hawkey scored the Camels’ tries with adding all three conversions and a penalty. For Truro Ross Martin dropped a goal.
Penryn had a fine win at home against Devonport Services 57-19, with Darren Pellow scoring a hat-trick of tries and Dave Pascoe kicking seven conversions.
Newquauy Hornets defeated bottom side Withycombe 24-19 at the Sports Centre thanks to a penalty-try and further scores from Dan Pearce and Alex Woodley, Sam Cullen kicked the other points.
Bude’s game at Tiverton fell foul of the weather.
In London London Cornish defeated Weybridge Vandals 13-10 in London 2 SW. Dickon Moon’s report can be found here
In the Cornwall & Devon League both Hayle’s and Saltash’s matches were postoned. Liskeard & Looe hosted Falmouth and won 20-6, whilst St. Austell and Stithians both hosted Devon opposition losing to Crediton 15-6 and Bideford 24-0 respectively.
It was the second weekend of Internationals with France’s defeat of South Africa in Toulouse on Friday night by 20-13, the world champions having led the French 13-3 at one point, being the best game of the weekend.
Ireland dented Australian hopes of a Grand Slam tour holding the Wallabies 20-20 at Croke Park thanks to a late try from Brian O’Driscoll.
England huffed and puffed to a 16-9 win over Argentina, Scotland defeated Fiji 23-10 at Murrayfield, for whom former Camborne player Josh Matavesi made his debut. Wales defeated Samoa 17-13, whilst the All Blacks, New Zealand of course were made to work hard for their 20-6 win over Italy in the San Siro stadium in Milan