Let’s start with the league, on Sunday the Cornish Pirates had a dress rehearsal for their British & Irish Cup quarter-final tie with Doncaster Knights at the Mennaye on Sunday March 13th with the winners away to either London Welsh or Leinster.
Second placed Knights gave the home side food for thought with a 26-19 win to inflict a third straight defeat for the Cornish side.
Jack Arnott opened the scoring with an unconverted try but Knights struck back with a try and penalty for an 8-5 half-time advantage.
The visitors took control of the game with a converted try and a couple of penalties to lead 21-5.
Jack Innard’s try converted by Kieran Hallett gave the Pirates a sniff, but a further Knights’ try put them 26-12 ahead.
Pirates did manage to get a losing bonus point when Hallett converted Tyler Gendall’s late try.
That result leaves the Pirates in 9th spot in the Championship.
At Redruth on Saturday an excellent game with visitors Dorking saw the Reds win 46-20. Nielson Webber bagged a hat-trick of tries with other scores coming from Ben Priddey, Lewis Vinnicombe, Sam Parsons, Rob Coote and Brad Howe.
That result keeps the Reds in fifth place just two points behind Taunton who visit the Rec on St. Piran’s day.
The Cornish All Blacks ‘season of woe continues with another defeat at Polson to Canterbury 39-12. Richard Friend and Dave Parish scored tries with Chris Swash adding a conversion.
Relegation for Launceston is likely to be confirmed by next week end’s trip to Southend.
Only two games involved Cornish clubs in Tribute Western Counties West and both ended in defeat for local sides.
St. Austell picked up a losing bonus point at Cullompton from a 15-12 defeat. Tries for the Saints were scored by George Knowles and James Martin with Andy Ashwin adding a conversion.
At Penryn, visitors Torquay Athletic prevailed 27-11 in a feisty affair that saw Borough’s hooker Jordan Smith show a red card for punching.
Josh Chambers scored a try with Matt Horton kicking a couple of penalties, sadly the Borough’s days in this division look numbered as they still languish at the foot of the table.
In London 2 SW, a good five pointer for London Cornish as they defeated Warlingham 27-17. Tom Jeffery (2), Tim Homan (2) and Joe Donnelly scored tries with Josh Allison adding a conversion.
In Tribute Cornwall & Devon League, there was a North Coast derby as bottom placed Newquay Hornets entertained leaders Bude. No surprises as the visitors ran out 61-17 winners.
Bude scored nine tries with three going to Kyle Speare and Dan Pearce converting eight scores.
St. Ives enjoyed a 35-10 win at Paignton with Peter Mabbott, Lewis Thomas, Cameron Bone, Jamie Prisk and Martyn Lawrence all crossing and Grant Thirlby converting the lot.
Falmouth drew at Plymouth Argaum 17 – all, Oli Church and Steve Instance with the tries both converted by Justyn Irons who also landed a penalty.
Pirates Amateurs won 31-10 at Tavistock. Steve Evans (2), Callum Osborne, Connor Bick and Rhodri McAtee all scored tries with Jimmy Tresize kicking the other points.
A welcome win for Hayle who won at struggling Exeter Saracens 35-20, thanks to tries from Harvey (2), Rashleigh and Benton with Dan Lello’s boot adding the rest of the points.
In Tribute Cornwall 1, Lanner move to the top of the table following their 21-17 defeat of previous leaders School of Mines. Liskeard-Looe defeated Veor at Lux Park 15-11 whilst Illogan Park got the better of Helston 23-12. Perranporth defeated near-neighbours St. Agnes 24-12.
In Tribute Cornwall 2, Roseland maintained their top spot with a 61-0 defeat of Lankelly-Fowey. St. Just had a walkover against Albany, Camelford got the better of Stithians 11-3.
In the Tribute Cornwall Cup, Camborne bidding for a fourth successive win, defeated Wadebridge Camels 24-5 in the first semi-final. Town’s tries were scored by Damien Cook, Dave Roberts and a penalty-try with Rhys Brownfield adding all three conversions and a penalty. The sole score for the Camels was Matt Ballard try.
Cornwall under 20’s slim hopes of making the National quarter-finals of this season’s County Championship were extinguished as they lost 36-14 to Gloucestershire at Cinderford on Sunday.
Their final pool game against Devon on March 13th at Camborne, who also lost for a second time on Sunday, will decide the group wooden spoon.
Both Christian Judge (Plymouth Albion) and Tom Cowan-Dickie (Redruth) featured for England Counties on Friday evening as they lost to Scottish Club International XV 57-27 at Netherdale.
Billy Keast (Redruth) was a bench replacement for England Under 20s in their defeat to Ireland 26-20 at Kingston park.
Moment of the week has to be Jack Nowell’s try-saving tackle for England at Twickenham on Ireland’s Robbie Henshaw, he scat un’ good n’ proper Cornish style!
Finally, and though I couldn’t be present, TASC held it’s annual dinner at the Rose-in-Vale Hotel in Mithian on Saturday night with our guests of honour being Ewart and Margaret White. Ewart as you will recall stepped down as County team secretary after 20 years at the end of last season.