By Bill Hooper TASC Press Officer & Photos Simon Bryant Iktis photo
CORNWALL make two changes to the starting XV that took the field against Kent for Sunday’s semi-final clash with Yorkshire at Camborne RFC kick-off 1pm.
The Under 20s will be looking for a first Twickenham final since 2002, when they lost to Hampshire 27-14.
The following season they again reached the semi-finals only to lose to Yorkshire 39-12 at Redruth a game in which Yorkshire winger Nick Cooper starred.
Cornwall will once again be weary of the danger the white rose possesses out-wide with wingers Rob Rekis – five tries in the last two games – and Ben Magee being closely watched.
The pack also has notably players with back row George Hedgley having been close to Scotland Under 20 selection this season, whilst lock Stuart Nel and No.8 Tom Berridge are more than a handful.
Fit again Jake Woodward returns to the wing following his four tries scored for the Camels against Torquay last Saturday, whilst in the pack hooker Locryn Williams is unavailable his place is taken by Redruth’s Tommy-Lee Southworth.
On the bench there are further changes with Hayle’s Russell Stevens, Redruth’s Adam Smith and Luke Hattam, now playing at Exeter University, coming in.
Since the win over Kent the Cornwall squad have been preparing in earnest for the tough challenge they know Yorkshire will pose. Bryn Jenkins & Mike Rawlings coaches of the forwards said: “The whole squad were on a bit of a high following the victory in Kent but we soon bought them back to ground. We will be missing a couple of guys Locryn Williams who travels to New Zealand and Tony Pellow through injury. Selection has been difficult with a number of guys putting in good performances and some guys have missed out for this important game.”
Whilst Cornwall coach Ian Morgan added: “Since the quarter final victory we have trained on Sunday mornings with a final session against Camborne School of Mines which has proved beneficial.”
Photo – Tommy Phillips another young Cornish prop with a growing reputation
The Cornwall RFU hope for a big turnout of supporters on Sunday to cheer the boys on to Twickenham.
The gates to the ground will be open at 12 with the clubhouse open earlier for those who wish to attend and saviour the atmosphere. Entry is by the purchase of a programme which costs £3; Camborne RFC will have the clubhouse open for alcoholic / non-alcoholic beverages and light refreshments on sale.
CRFU President John Grindle said: “This is a tough game for Cornwall having to face an unbeaten Yorkshire team. I am sure the squad will do their very best to put on a creditable performance in front of a home crowd. I would like to thanks Camborne RFC for hosting the fixture and the sponsors of the Cornwall U20 Shirts Kelsall Steele.”
Photo – Cornwall fly-half Dan Rutter equally at home at 9 or 10 for Redruth
Whilst CRFU Chair Denis Preece said: “The team had a superb result against Kent, and will hopefully benefit from a large and vocal crowd turning out at Camborne RFC on the 15 March to cheer on the young black and gold team!!” We really need to have as many supporters as possible attending and supporting the guys.”
Cornwall Under 20 team manager Chris Lea said: “We are now into cup competition rugby, one game away from a Twickenham final. For those guys not involved we know they will be disappointed, but as a squad we want them at Camborne to support and be a part of the semi-final experience. We thank them for their efforts but know a number of them will be in contention not only next season but for two or more seasons at this level.”
CORNWALL U.20: C Swann, A Taylor (both Cardiff Met), J Simmons (Hartpury Coll), R Brownfield (Pirates Ams), J Woodward (Wadebridge Camels), D Rutter), S Fox; T Phillips, T-L Southworth (all Redruth), J Tyack (St. Ives), T Prisk (Redruth, Capt), A Hughes (Penryn), S Furse (Newquay Hornets), J Haines (Cornish All Blacks), N Stanleick (Camborne).
Replacements: J Martin (Truro), R Stevens (Hayle), D Marsh (Truro), A Smith (Redruth), L Hattam (Exeter Uni), L Thomas (Redruth), T Eley (Truro).
Travelling Reserves: Z Noseda (Truro), T Sandercock (Cornish All Blacks), R Burley (Penryn), A Hayler (Loughborough Uni & RAF)