Cornish Pirates 29 Exeter Chiefs 21
On a most pleasant and atmospheric August evening the Cornish Pirates deservedly took the scalp of visiting Exeter Chiefs, reports Phil Westren from the Mennaye
Photo: Brian Tempest. Sam Matavesi scores one of his two tries
Rob Baxter’s Devon side arrived at the Mennaye Field with a mix of Premiership and international stars, and aspiring young talent. However, in opposition a well-prepared Pirates outfit were keen to make a mark and follow up their 44-7 win at Aberavon Wizards, which they did, with another impressive pre-season performance.
There were only four minutes on the clock when the Pirates registered their first try on the night. Scrum-half Alex Day and flanker Josh Caulfield led the advance and when the ball was spread right it was centre Callum Patterson who dived in at the clubhouse corner. A first try in Pirates colours for the former Ulsterman, he was later named man-of-the-match. Fly-half Will Cargill was unable to add the extras.
It was a dream start, but one soon to get even better when hooker Sam Matavesi scored by the Penzance posts. Cargill this time duly converted and on the quarter hour mark also landed a fine penalty from near 40 metres to give the Pirates an incredible 15-0 lead.
The Chiefs endeavoured to respond with Argentina international Santiago Cordero impressing on the wing, but for the moment the Pirates held firm thanks to a crunch of a tackle made by wing Robin Wedlake.
Midway through the first half the visitors rallied to get points on the board thanks to a score from No. 8 Tom Lawday. Dual-registered with the Pirates last season, his try at the Newlyn gate corner was converted by fly-half Joe Simmonds.
Were the Chiefs about to find their flow to impact more on the game? Well, if they were then the Pirates showed no signs of caving in and scored next when Matavesi displayed power once more for a converted try.
In the build to half-time Exeter managed though to respond, Lawday again a try-scorer following Cordero’s telling run and him then notching a hat-trick. This followed the Pirates losing full-back Kyle Moyle to the sin bin, with Simmonds’ third conversion making it 22-21 at the break.
For the second half, and with the floodlights coming into their own, the Pirates wore their new ‘Tribute’ purple away shirts. Catching the eye, replica versions will surely sell well.
As for important concentration just on the rugby, the Pirates continued to impress at the start of the second period and on 52 minutes extended their lead – and how! Pressing inside the Chiefs ‘22’ the ball found the hands of prop Christian Judge who cast eyes immediately on the line. His was then a sudden burst – with bulk, and in no mood to be stopped, his converted try opened up an eight points gap.
Both sides introduced replacements and Exeter’s hopes were occasionally raised through the continuing efforts of Cordero, his fellow wing James Short and the centre pairing of Michele Campagnaro and former ‘Pirate’ Tom Hendrickson, but all to no avail. There was also a lengthy break in play after replacement Sam Morley fell worryingly injured, leading to him being stretchered off the field.
Photo Brian Tempest: Happy coach Paves
In remaining time, the Pirates continued to hold tight, their defence impressive and keeping a clean sheet in the second half. Then, at the sound of international referee JP Doyle’s final whistle, celebrations for home supporters began – this a game one and all will take pride of place in the memory bank.
Speaking after the match, coach Alan Paver said:
“The contest provided a wonderful occasion with the balance of both teams about right and the game played in the right spirit.
“We were very thankful to Exeter for coming down to fulfil the fixture on such a special evening and the response from supporters was immense.
“As for our performance I thought it was strong and competitive and to come out on the right side of the score was the cherry on the top. But, to be honest, it was more about the occasion with everyone having pulled together to make it an enjoyable evening. The win was nice, yes it was special, but it wasn’t the main focus.”
Cornish Pirates: 15 Kyle Moyle, 14 Robin Wedlake, 13 Rory Parata, 12 Callum Patterson, 11 Harry Strong, 10 Will Cargill, 9 Alex Day; 1 Christian Judge, 2 Sam Matavesi, 3 Jack Andrew, 4 Toby Freeman, 5 Brett Beukeboom (capt), 6 Josh Caulfield, 7 Matt Bolwell, 8 Tom Duncan.
Replacements: Billy Keast, Dan Frost, Tyler Gendall, Nodar Cheishvili, Danny Cutmore, John Stevens, James McRae, Maliq Holden, Matt Evans, Harvey Skinner, AJ Cant, Jake Ashby.
Yellow card: Moyle
Exeter Chiefs: 15 Sal M’Boge, 14 Santiago Cordero, 13 Michele Campagnaro, 12 Tom Hendrickson, 11 James Short,10 Joe Simmonds, 9 Stuart Townsend; 1 Moray Low, 2 Elvis Taione, 3 Jack Owlett, 4 Toby Salmon, 5 Wilhelm Van Der Sluys, 6 Richard Capstick, 7 James Freeman (capt), 8 Tom Lawday.
Replacements: James Kenny, Jack Innard, Alfie Petch, Rus Tuima, Sam Morley, Joe Elderkin.
Cornish Pirates – tries: Patterson, Matavesi (2), Judge; cons: Cargill (3); pen: Cargill
Exeter Chiefs – tries: Lawday (3); cons: Simmonds (3)
Referee: JP Doyle
Cornish Pirates’ St. Austell Brewery Man-of-the-Match: Callum Patterson
REDRUTH 50 – 38 BEDDAU
By Bill Hooper, at the Recreation Ground.
Redruth continued their build up to their National League 2 South season with an eight try win over Welsh Championship side Beddau coached by former Wales, Cornish Pirates and Mounts Bay fly-half Lee Jarvis.
Photo: Aaron Simmonds an exciting new face at Redruth this season
It was just the sort of test head coach Pale Nonu was looking for to build on the encouraging result at Exmouth the previous week.
With the pitch looking in great nick and a sprinkling of new faces in the Redruth side, spectators were keen to run the rule over the squad ahead of that important first league game at Dings Crusaders on 1st September.
Having weathered the initial Beddau assault Redruth made a great start with an opening try scored by skipper Richard Brown, converted by Richie Kevern with just 5 minutes on the clock.
Beddau scored an unconverted try through full back Tom Preece before flanker Mark Grubb grabbed Redruth’s second try after several pick and goes, with Kevern again on the money with the extras. Sadly Kevern was forced from the fray shortly after following a heavy knock.
Centre Jack Simmons caught the eye in the first half and was rewarded with an interception try converted by fly-half replacement James Tucker.
Beddau scored their second try before half-time thanks to a well-placed cross kick dotted down by wing Christian Bird to make it 21-10 at the break.
Playing down the slope Redruth made a quick start to the second half scoring tries through new-signing, wing Shea Cornish and prop Jack Hodge, with the later converted by Ashley Hosking as the rolling subs kicked in.
New signing Jovin Harper, pressed into service at lock in place of Ben Fox who was ill, put in a big shift, as did other newbies Aaron Simmonds, formerly of Penryn, at full-back, Luke Flack, at centre during the second half, Aden Brassington in the back row and former Camborne player Luke Barnes at hooker
Beddau pulled back a score from Luke Jones before young Tucker went over in Hell fire corner following a fine flowing backs move.
The see-saw nature continued as the Welsh side scored their fourth try and Jones his second.
Photo Simon Bryant Iktisphoto – Aden Brassington
Centre Connor Gilbert showed a good turn of speed to break the cover and score try number seven under the posts allowing Hosking to add the extras.
Beddau scored either side of Redruth’s final try with scores from Owain Cotter and Bird with his second, again scored by Cornish, who finished a flowing move superbly with aplomb, to bring up the fifty points for the Reds.
Another encouraging result for the Reds, despite missing a few key players, notably in the forwards. Plenty of work to do and no doubt defensive patterns will be looked at this week in training ahead of St. Austell next Saturday.
Redruth: A Simmonds, D Bonds, J Simmons, N Webber, M Bowden, R Kevern, J Oulton; J Hodge, R Brown (Capt), C Wiliams, L Hattam, J Harper, M Gidlow, M Grubb, B Howe.
Replacements: L Barnes E Salt, V man, A Brassington, Ash Hosking, J Tucker, Adam Hosking, C Gilbert, L Flack, S Cornish
Redruth scores: Tries, Brown, Grubb, Simmons, Cornish (2), Hodge, Tucker, Gilbert, cons, Kevern (2), Tucker, Hosking (2)
Referee: James Milliner (RFU)
On the Thursday night Penryn lost a tight game at the Memorial Ground 10-12 to St. Ives
On Saturday Wadebridge Camels defeated Bude 57-0. Camels have picked up former Wild Geese player Darren Livett who has moved to North Cornwall. Camborne, lacking a good few first choice players, lost at home to Taunton Titans by 43-12.
Launceston travelled to Barnstaple and lost to the home side by 43-7. Falmouth played 5 X 20 mins games against Canton (Cardiff) winning 2.