By Bill Hooper, at the Recreation Ground, Redruth


Cornwall 48 Hampshire 24

THE Twickenham dream may have been fully extinguished when Surrey forfeited their final match against Kent late on Friday afternoon, but the Cornwall supporters flocked in their masses to Redruth.

All the trimmings where laid on, Trelawny’s Army revelled in the presence of the Cornwall team of 91, guests of honour of the CRFU, the Falmouth Marine Band, the pasty being hoisted on the crossbar. The Cornish sunshine and the Cornwall team performance and a good old sing song post-match also helped put smiles on their faces.

Seven tries scored in a resounding win, against a valiant and dogged Hampshire side, showed just what the competition can offer if organised properly!

Head coach Graham Dawe was satisfied with his side’s performance. He said. “It was tight up to half-time, we only led by three points and Hampshire were deservedly in the game. We said at half-time that we didn’t need to chase the game, the conditions playing down the slope will help us and that Hampshire will tire, we had a very strong bench, and that made the difference.

“We were much better today on the penalty front and worked very hard at the breakdown, whilst outside we showed vision playing the ball. 

“We made a great start to the second half, Honey put us in the right area of the field, we won the ball putting us in a position to exploit their defence, we played sensible rugby, were patient and chances came our way. We have blooded some good young players this season and they will only get better in the seasons to come, so I am very confident that we can go on to better things.”

Hampshire scored first thanks to an early penalty from Lewis Dennett, but it didn’t take long for Cornwall to reply.

Former Bude youngster Duncan Tout, who had an outstanding game in the centre, ran in a great try from distance, Honey adding the first of his five conversions.

Ryan Morrell ran hard into the Cornwall twenty-two setting up a lineout for the visitors that led to a try by Kanter Wittock, bettered by Dennett.

Honey tied the scores with a penalty, however, Hampshire soon struck again with Curtis Barnes dotting down, Dennett again found the uprights with the extras.

Good play from Harry Larkins and Josh Semmens led to a popular score in the corner from Dan Tyrrell, the winger repeating the dose just moments later off a great CJ Boyce pass to put Cornwall 20-17 to the good.. 

Cornwall needed a fast start to the second half playing down the famous slope, it came thanks to giant lock Hugo Culverhouse who scored in Hellfire Corner.

Cornwall had a cushion and they continued to press the pedal to the metal with further tries from Jordan Nicholls twice, the second off a great pass from man-of-the-match Tout, and Boyce.

Hampshire were rewarded with a penalty-try near the end, but it was Cornwall’s day.

CORNWALL: Matt Shepherd (St Austell), Harry Larkins (Camborne), Duncan Tout (Tonbridge Juddians), Josh Semmens (Pirates Ams), Dan Tyrrell (St Austell), Fraser Honey (Rams), CJ Boyce (St Austell); Tommy-Lee Southworth, Ben Priddey (capt), Jon Drew (all Camborne), Hugo Culverhouse (Guernsey), Edd Pascoe (Redruth), Ben Fox, Sam Stevens (both Redruth), Mark Bright (Richmond). Replacements: Tom Cowan-Dickie (Plymouth Abion), Declan Prowse (Camborne), Jordan Nicholls (Camborne), Pat Walton (Plymouth Albion), Adam Hughes (Camborne), Sam James (Redruth), Will Tanswell (Camborne).

Tries: Tout (14), Tyrrell (34 & 36), Culverhouse (41), Nicholls (60, 67), Boyce (63); Convs: Honey (15, 42, 61, 64, 68); Pens: Honey (25).