This Sunday (18th Feb) sees Cornwall U17 Group finally get their season underway in a three-way fixture against Dorset & Wilts and Somerset.
The U17 group run a slightly different format than the U18 schedule as the focus at this monitoring the development of players with the final aim of gaining selection to the U18 group for the following season and ultimately South West Divisonal representation.
The CRFU U17 & U18 Group management have seen a huge number of players with this process beginning back in Feb/Mar 2017. The process involves players that are highlighted by their club coaches as potential Cornwall players, these players were invited to attend a number of open sessions where the Cornwall management, along with assistance from Cornish Pirates players, would select players they felt showed the attributes required. These include not only basic skill levels but physicallity and more imporatantly an excellent attitude toward playing for Cornwall.
The U17 team also attended a number of U16 club games and the Cornwall U16 club cups finals day at Newquay where again there were in excess of 160 players on show.
The U16 players are then left through the summer and then contacted again by the U17 & U18 management in early Sept to see if they are still playing rugby, if so are they at the same club , same position etc. There is a large number of "drop-outs" from the game in this transition from U16 to Colts rugby.
The U17 squad consists of approx 50+ players that will represent Cornwall U17 over 3 or 4 fixtures where the coaching team will be able to highlight those they consider potential U18 squad players. The coaching staff will also attend the Colts finals day to see if there is anyone who may have "slipped through the net"
This weekend sees Cornwalls first inter-county game which is a three-way fixture against Dorset & Wilts and Somerset. Cornwall will play a 40 min game against Dorset & Wilts, then a 40 min fixture against Somerset. This format allows for expanded squads and more flexibility to see players in different positions.
There are two of these fixtures for the U17 with the first being held at Bournemouth RFC and the second being held at Burnham-on-Sea RFC. Next season sees Cornwall hosting one of the rounds.
Squad for this Sunday's Fixture against D&W and Somerset
- Charlie Short (Launceston RC)
- Aaron Kessell (Penzance & Newlyn RFC)
- Jamie Sherwood (Camborne RFC)
- Robert Walsh (Saltash RFC)
- Toby Haywood (Truro School)
- Cain Worley (Liskeard-Looe RFC)
- Mawgan Osborne (Penzance & Newlyn RFC)
- Brad Pullen (St Austell RFC)
- William Oatey (Saltash RFC)
- Charlie Tummon (Launceston RC)
- Alfie Burns (Truro School)
- Matthew Simons (Hayle RFC)
- Andrew Rowe (Saltash RFC)
- Devon Bennet-Murray (Saltash RFC)
- Roan Kitto (Penzance & Newlyn RFC)
- Sam Thomas (Perranporth RFC)
- Charlie Crichton (Launceston RC)
- Danny Snook (Saltash RFC)
- Kain Dockrey (St Austell RFC)
- Lawrence Armstrong (Launceston RC)
- Ollie Bebbington (Launceston RC)
- Ethan Wildgoose (Perranporth RFC)
- Ashley Gilder (St Austell RFC)
- Adam Long (Camborne RFC)
- Finn Turley (Launceston RC)