Photo : Dan Barbary – Ben Fox wins the lineout
REDRUTH 50 – 36 CLIFTON
By Bill Hooper, at the Recreation Ground.
Redruth took the spoils in a fourteen try thriller at a sunny Recreation Ground outscoring their opponents by eight tries to six.
It was just the performance the Redruth faithful were looking for following the big defeat at Worthing two weeks ago and the narrow win in Guernsey last Saturday.
Head coach Pale Nonu was pleased to get a big win under his belt. He said. “We expected a tough game, Clifton have got a strong physical pack, we adjusted our tactics after the opening period of play, we didn’t panic, we trusted our systems and worked our way back into it scoring some quality tries to end up worthy winners.”
Prior to kick-off Redruth were presented with their certificate for achieving RFU club accreditation by Cornwall RFU Chairman Denis Preece. This will enable the club to open up new avenues of grant funding.
Clifton made the better start playing down the slope with their big pack racing to a 17-5 lead after 15 minutes, thanks to tries from Mitch Spencer, Chris Rovery and David Hill, with Brad Barnes adding a conversion to an unconverted try for Redruth scored by wing Brad Janes.
Redruth were undaunted drawing level with two quick-fire scores from winger Shea Cornish, who scored the try of the game following a dazzling run that took him through the Clifton side from half-way to dot down at the posts, and then scrum-half Jack Oulton with his opener from distance made from a pass flipped up given by centre Jack Simmons, fly-half Richie Kevern adding the first of his four conversions.
Before half-time Redruth scored a further three tries through full-back Aaron Simmonds, off a long pass from Kevern, flanker Mark Grubb, following good work from fellow back rower Ben Fox, and Oulton, completing his brace, to turnaround 36-17 up at half-time.
The second half was barely a minute old when centre Connor Gilbert made a good break from half-way spinning out of a tackle to run hard into Hellfire corner and score Redruth’s seventh try of the afternoon to huge cheers.
There followed tit-for-tat scores as Alex Giltrow and Sam Stevens, set up from a powerful maul by the home pack, crossing for their respective sides, Simmonds adding the extras to Stevens’ try.
Redruth brought on prop Tom Concu and hooker Tom Cowan-Dickie, both on loan from the Cornish Pirates for this game, to freshen up the pack for the finale.
With the result in the bag Redruth relaxed allowing Clifton to claim two late tries from Ben Halpin and Aex Lambert, it mattered not as the dye was already cast allowing Redruth to record a fourth win from five starts to confirm their good start to the season.
The Reds are back on the road this Saturday with a visit to Birmingham with 2:30 pm kick-off.
Redruth: A Simmonds, B Janes, J Simmons (S Cornish 75), C Gilbert, S Cornish (T Notman 62), R Kevern (J Tucker 46), J Oulton; J Hodge, R Brown (Capt) (T Cowan-Dickie 51), C Williams (T Concu 51), L Hattam (B Howe 56), T Prisk, M Grubb, S Stevens, B Fox.
Redruth scores: Tries, Janes, Cornish, Oulton (2), Simmonds, Grubb, Gilbert, Stevens, Cons, Kevern (4), Simmonds.
Yellow Card: Concu (75)
Clifton: T Francis, B Halpin, S Harrison, H Campbell, A Lambert, B Barnes, M Spencer (D Openshaw 34); C Simpson, D Wheeler (B Edwards 20), A Giltrow (M Roberts 49), H Harper, David Hill, A Chesters (C Rovery 29), C Rovery (B Sullivan 23), Daniel Hill (S Taylor 56).
Clifton scores: Tries, Spencer, Rovery, David Hill, Giltrow, Halpin, Lambert, Cons Barnes (3)
Yellow Card: Harrison (33)
Referee: Andrew Wigley (RFU)
Redruth man-of-the-match: Jack Oulton. A sparkling performance from the scrum-half, a constant thorn in Clifton’s side all afternoon, took his tries well