JASON LEONARD CUP
UNDER 20 COUNTY CHAMPIONSHIP POOL 4
DORSET & WILTS 22 – 34 CORNWALL
Photo: Camborne’s Declan Matthews scores for Cornwall. Photo Simon Bryant Iktisphoto
Despite an early start compounded with the clocks going forward one hour Cornwall put in a big shift to score six tries to defeat their hosts and top the group, reports Bill Hooper
Cornwall’s reward is a home quarterfinal this Sunday (Easter Day) against Kent at St. Austell’s Tregorrick Park, kick-off 1 pm.
Cornwall got down to business from the kick-off and before long were rewarded when Camborne centre Declan Matthews went over for an unconverted try.
The twin counties replied soon after with a converted try and then another score not long after to lead 12-5.
The Cornish youngsters pulled a try back before the end of the first quarter when winger Jake Penprase got over for the second game running.
Cornwall then re-took the lead with their third try scored by Falmouth prop Ollie Andrews, fly-half Reuben Edwards added the conversion for a 17-12 advantage.
Photo: Cornwall skipper Torin Clarke secures the line out. Photo Simon Bryant Iktis photo
The ding-dong nature of the game continued as Dorset & Wilts hit back approaching half-time to score a converted try to lead by two points.
There was still time for Cornwall to add to their tally and it came through Camborne flanker Tiaan Clark who scored the black and gold’s fourth try for a 22-19 half-time lead.
Early in the second half Dorset & Wilts tied the scores with a penalty kick, but that was as good as it got for the home side as Cornwall finally took command after 60 minutes when Redruth’s Connor Gilbert scored a fifth Cornish try, that his club mate James Tucker converted.
Photo: Jake Penprase scoring for Cornwall. Photo Simon Bryant Iktis photo
Launceston replacement prop Brandon Rowley completed the scoring with ten minutes to go when he got over for try number six.
News soon filtered through that Kent had caused a surprise beating Surrey at Farnham 36-14 to clinch runners-up spot in pool 3 behind Hertfordshire, who surprisingly lost to Eastern Counties 22-15 in what proved to be a very tight group. Hertfordshire will be at home to Gloucestershire, who overcame Hampshire 13-12 at Havent.
In the Northern half of the competition, Yorkshire came out on top of their pool and will face East Midlands in the last eight, whilst North Midlands topped the other pool and they will face Cheshire.
Cornwall (Launceston unless stated): E Tyler (Penryn), J Penprase (Bath Uni), C Gilbert (Redruth) D Matthews (Camborne), D Hubble (Falmouth), R Edwards, C Boyce (St. Austell); R Bentham, L Barnes (Camborne), K Gratrix (Penryn), D Goldsmith, N Stanier-Smith (St. Agnes), T Clark (Camborne), A Brassington (Redruth), T Clarke (Capt).
Replacements: H Lightfoot, C Degenhardt (Penryn), O Andrews (Falmouth), B Rowley, J Tucker (Redruth), N Nash (Brixham), K Bradley (Penryn).