St Ives 49 v 13 Wadebridge Camels
Last Saturday at Alexandra Road the St Ives 1st XV welcomed North Cornwall side Wadebridge Camels in their latest Western Counties West League game.
Before kick off a minutes silence was immaculately observed as a mark of respect for the recent tragic loss of St Ives player Peter Skeggs.
Joint Head coaches Paul Thirlby and Rob Elloway named a strong side that included a few changes from last weekends win against Falmouth. New signing John Lamsin came into the second row, with Jamie Hoskin moving to the flank. Rob Elloway moved to number 8 with Martyn Lawrance unavailable this week. Liam Jolly started at scrum half with Joe Parma starting on the right wing.
The game began strongly for St Ives with the visitors showing some indiscipline in defence. On three occasions in the first 15 minutes they were caught offside in their own 22, giving Rhys Brownfield opportunities from penalty kicks, two of which he converted, to give the Hakes a 6 points to nil lead with a quarter of an hour played.
Despite the early pressure from St Ives the Wadebridge side looked dangerous on the break and threatened to break through the St Ives defence on several occasions without success.
With the St Ives forwards beginning to pile on the pressure, in the 27th minute an attacking line out deep in the visitors 22 saw the pack rumble towards the try line with a rolling maul, which was only halted when it was illegally brought down, giving referee Richard Conybeare no choice but to award the penalty try, which is an automatic 7 points, following a regulation change, to put St Ives ahead by 13 points to nil.
The pattern of the first half was set with the St Ives pack dominating the set piece only to have play broken up by an eager Wadebridge side that looked dangerous with the ball in hand in open play. The St Ives defence was strong though and managed to keep the visitors from breaking through until the 37th minute. St Ives second row, Jamie Prisk, was yellow carded for an offence while defending against a Wadebridge maul. The resulting penalty which was despatched to the corner was converted into 5 points, when Camels player Adam Collings crossed for the try.
The referee blew the half time whistle a few minutes later to end the first half with the score St Ives 13, Wadebridge 5.
The scoring in the second half was opened by the visitors, when a St Ives scrum was penalised in front of their own post, allowing Camels' Danny Thomas to convert the penalty chance to make the score 13-8 with 43 minutes gone.
The next period of the match saw a spell of domination from St Ives, even though the visitors looked dangerous on the break. It was the St Ives players who managed to get a grip on the match and begin to control proceedings. On 52 minutes it was the power of the St Ives pack that was mauling towards the try line once again. This time it was Liam Jolly at the rear that dotted down when the pack crossed to score the try. Rhys Brownfield converted an excellent wide conversion to put the Hakes ahead by 20 points to 8.
St Ives continued to dominate and the next score was not long in coming. This time it was left wing Peter Mabbott that scored the try in the 55th minute. Again Brownfield converted to put the Hakes in control of the match at 27-8.
With the St Ives players continuing to enjoy a spell of dominance the next score came from Rob Elloway, who scored his first points for the club with a well deserved try to secure the all important bonus point for the Hakes. Again Brownfield kicked the extras to extend the St Ives lead to 34 points to 8.
With the result beginning to look beyond all reasonable doubt the St Ives coaches rang the changes and used all three replacements in the 62nd minute, Treve Polglase made his first appearance for the club in several years with Sam Carter and Tom Chandler also being brought into play.
The pressure on the Wadebridge defence continued and in the 70th minute the referee awarded St Ives a penalty. The St Ives players looked to take the quick tap, but this was illegally prevented by Camels hooker, Matt Ballard, who the referee yellow carded for the offence. Brownfield once again kicked the points to extend the the St Ives lead to 29 points at 37-8.
On 75 minutes the Hakes crossed for another try, this time through replacement Tom Chandler when he crossed out wide on the left following another attack on the Wadebridge line. Brownfield again kicked the conversion from the touchline to make the score 44-8.
Throughout the match the visitors had looked dangerous with the ball in hand in open play and finally in the 78th minute they were rewarded with a try when Matt Ballard crossed the St Ives line to score. The conversion was missed and it looked like the final score was set at 44 points to 13.
The St Ives players had other ideas though and a chance was created when replacement Tom Chandler stole the ball from a Wadebridge ruck allowing an attack to be created in the final minute of the match. The move was finished when another replacement, Sam Carter, dived over the top of a ruck on the Wadebridge try line to score the final points of the afternoon. Rhys Brownfield nearly underlined an excellent afternoon with the boot with a conversion that hit the post in what was the last action of the match, when the referee brought the game to a close with the final score St Ives 49, Wadebridge 13.
This result sees St Ives top the Western Counties West table as the only side to have two bonus point victories. The side travel this coming Saturday to St Austell for the next league game. Kick off in St Austell is scheduled for 3:00pm, any travelling support would be very welcome.
St Ives : Ben Jenkins, Ben Taylor, Leigh Hocking, John Lamsin, Jamie Prisk, Jamie Hoskin, Sean Stevens, Rob Elloway, Liam Jolly, Paul Thirlby, Peter Mabbott, Steve Kenward (Captain), Tom Nicholas, Joe Parma, Rhys Brownfield.
Replacemets: Sam Carter, Tom Chandler, Treve Ploglase (All Used).