Hakes Dump Cornish All Blacks Out of Cornwall Cup
St Ives 40 v 33 Launceston
Last Saturday at Alexandra Road Cornwall Cup holders St Ives welcomed fellow Cornish side Launceston in the quarter final of this season’s competition.
The Hakes named a few changes for this match including Ben Jenkins starting at prop alongside Jack Hodge who played his last loan game before returning to Redruth. Ben Watson came into the second row with new signing, Joji Volaisaya, and Kieran Brownfield on loan from Pirates Amateurs on the bench. Meanwhile, Launceston were fielding just about their strongest side.
The All Blacks started the game well. In only the second minute of the match from a line out deep in St Ives territory they foxed the St Ives players with a short lineout ball that was carried over the try line by Sam Snell for the opening try of the match. No conversion but Launceston held a 5 points to nil lead.
The St Ives players stated their intent straight from the restart when some good work through the phases saw an opportunity arise for Joe Parma to wriggle through the Launceston defence to score the try. It was Joe’s usual and astonishing illusiveness, leaving spectators and players wondering how he got through the defence. Dan Magee converted to put the Hakes ahead by 7 points to 5.
The Hakes continued to show good form and played some good controlled rugby. In the 13th minute a break down up the middle by the hard working Chris Quick, eventually sent Tom Nicholas steaming down the left hand side towards the clubhouse to claim a fine St Ives try. No conversion this time but the Hakes lead by 12 points to 5.
In the 19th minute a penalty despatched to the corner saw the Hakes under pressure in their own 22. The period of pressure from the Launceston pack eventually saw Lloyd Duke break free and go through to score the try. This time Glenn Cole slotted the conversion to level the scores at 12 points each.
It was St Ives that continued to play the better rugby and they soon pressed home another sustained attack. This time it was the forwards who put the visitors defence under pressure and in a desperate attempt to prevent a St Ives score a Launceston player was seen by the referee to stick out a leg and trip a St Ives player just prior to the act of scoring a try. The referee rightly awarded St Ives a penalty try. The Launceston player was shown a yellow card reducing the visitors to 14 men and 19 points to 12 down.
The St Ives pressure on the visitors showed no sign of relenting. The home side were playing some outstanding rugby, involving all the players across the pitch phase after phase. Another sweeping move down the left side saw Jack Kessell finish and score the Hakes’ third try of the match. Magee converted again to make the score St Ives 26, Launceston 12.
The Hakes kept their foot on the gas and finished the first half well in control of the match following another try, this time from second row Jamie Prisk, who went over from close range in the 38th minute. Magee again added the extras to bring the first half to a close with the Hakes leading by 33 points to 12.
The second half began much as the first had ended with St Ives on the attack. A penalty despatched to the corner gave the St Ives forwards a chance to show their power. The maul was formed after the lineout, but instead of the maul rumbling its way over the line hooker Ben Taylor sprinted around the corner to score the try. Magee kicked the conversion leaving the visitors a mountain to climb at 40 points to 12.
The St Ives players did a good job of soaking up any pressure that Launceston put upon them for long periods in the second half but when St Ives number 8 Martyn Lawrance was shown yellow for a high tackle in the 52nd minute it gave the visitors a chance with the advantage of the extra man.
Launceston duly applied the pressure, raised their game and were rewarded in the 56th minute with another try from their Captain Lloyd Duke. Cole added the extras to give the visitors hope at 40 points to 19.
The last 20 minutes saw St Ives begin to hold on a little as they looked to play out the remainder of the match. Launceston, however had other ideas and set about looking for the three scores that would bring them back into the tie. Once again, in spite of a healthy lead, St Ives looked vulnerable and spectators held their breath. In the 77th minute their persistence paid off when winger Dan Pearce sprinted through to score their 3rd try of the match. Cole converted to make the score 40 - 26.
With time running out fast Launceston kept up the pressure on the St Ives defence for the remainder of the match. In the final play they found some space out wide on the left and Ryan Westren, who had really come to the fore, crossed for the final score of the match. Cole converted again to set the final score at St Ives 40, Launceston 33.
This result, which was an exact reversal of the score last time the two sides met at Alexandra Road back in September, sees the Hakes progress to the semi-final of this season’s Cornwall Knockout Cup. Their opponents are yet to be confirmed, but the game will be played on February 2nd 2019.
The Hakes are back in action again this coming Saturday with another home fixture which sees them welcome Bristol side Thornbury in their latest South West One West league clash. Kick off at Alexandra Road is scheduled for 2:30pm. Any home support would be very welcome.
St Ives : Jack Hodge, Ben Taylor, Ben Jenkins, Jamie Prisk, Ben Watson, Chris Quick, Aden Brassington, Martyn Lawrance, Liam Jolly, Rhys Brownfield, Joe Parma, Grant Thirlby, Tom Nicholas (Captain), Jack Kessell, Dan Magee.
Replacements: Peter Mabbott, Joji Volaisaya, Connor Bick, Kieran Brownfield (All Used).