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Under 16s 'A' Win But 'B' Go Down to Somerset

Cornwall u16s played their final home games of the representative season at Callywith College. With Exeter Chief Academy selectors present the players knew that their performance individually and as a team would be recognised in games against strong academy teams and players from Somerset.

CHRIS LEA REPORTS:

The Cornwall A team started well against the Somerset East team and soon got the scoreboard moving with an early penalty by Ethan Morgan. Then on twenty minutes Tyler Dower, having a strong game at 8, blasted over to score the first try and that was quickly followed by a determined drive by second row Cam Bishop to sore the second try.

Within ten minutes back row Ben Grubb scored the third try to take the game away from Somerset. Ethan Morgan added all three conversions and demonstrated his game management with a good range of tactical kicking.

With Somerset adding a penalty of their own the half time score of 22-3 to Cornwall giving the hosts a healthy lead which they maintained with excellent defensive play.

Jack Mills at 7 again caught the eye making many turnovers and strong tackling.

The second half was 10 minutes old before centre Charlie Levick outpaced the visitors defence to score by the posts before Somerset scored their only try which was converted. Ethan Morgan added a try from a quickly tapped penalty and the final try was then added by replacement Ben Durrant who took his chance well. All 3 second half tries were converted by Morgan.

The 41-10 final score showed the huge improvement the squad had made since their last representative game.


Sadly the Cornwall B team were outplayed by a very strong Somerset West team who scored 14 tries. The Somerset team showed pace, off-loading and ball retention of the highest order for the whole game and were relentless in their support play.

Cornwall stuck to the task and scored a try in each half. Andre Green showed good pace down the wing in the first half and prop Xavier Jenkins powered over in the second half.

It was a tough rugby lesson for the Cornwall players but hopefully they will get their chance to bounce back.

Overall the event was a good advert for Cornish rugby with all the players awarded their U16 ties. The standard of play demonstrated in both games was excellent and the referees allowed the players to make the most of the afternoon.

Before the end of March the U16s will play against the U17s team so that the boys can make the transition from Junior rugby in to Colts. There is also the prospect of playing Dorset and Wilts if a suitable date and venue can be arranged amongst all the club cup games that have been rescheduled this winter.

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Coach Education - Positional Skills Clinics

Monday 26th February

You are invited to attend an evening with the Exeter Chiefs & Cornish Pirates players who will be leading positional skills clinics to our U14 & U15 DPP group. They will be looking at a variety of practices and technical input to benefit your players. The evening is open to all coaches so please confirm your attendance by emailing Rich Siveter on This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. by Friday 23rd February.

Monday 26th Feb

Truro College Astro Pitch

6pm meet & register

Approx. 8pm finish

 

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Cornwall U17 Get Underway

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)

 

 
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Cornwall U18 Players Make Final South West Squad

Three players from this season's Cornwall U18 squad have made the final cut to be part of the 23-man South West Division U18 squad for 2018. The boys are part of a succesful Cornwall U18 squad that lost only one fixture this season which was against an Exeter Chiefs Outreach U19 squad.  At a county level they had victories against Devon, Oxfordshire and Somerset.

This year saw four Cornwall players selected to attend the South West Final Assessment Day (FAD) which was held at Hartpury College on 21st Jan.  The FAD saw 37 players selected from the eight counties that make up the England Counties SW Division (Berkshire, Buckinghamshire, Cornwall, Devon, Dorset & Wilts, Gloucestershire, Oxfordshire and Somerset).  The fourth player selected for the FAD was Josh Mares (Newquay RFC) who unfortunatley suffered a hamstring injury very early in the assessment day and didn't make the cut from 37 to 25.

The 25-man SW U18 squad then played a fixture against a strong well organised Gloucester Rugby U17 Academy.  The SW lost narrowly to the premiership academy side but it gave the divisional players an insight to the level required to play at this level.

The squad was then cut from 25 to 23 and this makes up the final squad that will represent the SW in the divisional weekend which is being held at Stourbridge over the weekend of 23rd - 25th Feb.  Here the players will be competeing against players from all over the country, with the ultimate aim of being selected to represent England Counties at U18 level.

The CRFU U17 & U18 group management hope to make it two years in succession that a player from the squad has pulled on a "red rose" shirt for their country after St Ives player Jake Clemson represented his country last season.

'All three boys played really well at the final selection day and represented the County with Pride' said Dave Saunter Chairman of Youth and Education for CRFU, adding ' the boys follow in a long line of successful players who have come through this system for Cornwall. Their school and club coaches should be very proud of their involvement in the boys’ development.'

 

At the time of writing Saunter was also really pleased to announce the Coaching team for the U17s/18's programme for the next 12 months. Paul Duval is remaining in place as Team Manager and the rest of the coaching team Head Coach Andy Hawkin, Forwards coach Mark Pullen and backs coach Phil Stansfield are all keen to continue.

 

‘This is great news for the county as the guys really know the system and how to prepare the players for this route.’

 

Finally, Keith Lean and Saunter will continue in their positions as South West Selectors.

From all involved in Cornish rugby, we wish the boys all the luck and would like to congratulate all four players who made it through to the FAD.

Left to Right: Aaron Simmonds, Michael Austin, Fraser Nottle

 
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Cornwall Under 16s Beaten by Devon

Cornwall u16s travelled to Kelly College in Tavistock to play the latest round of representative games and on a bright sunny day in superb surroundings lost both games.


Eli Williams was the only try scorer for Cornwall A who went on to lose 46-5 to a superior Devon side. This was a disappointing follow-up to the Bristol games and there will be further opportunities for captain Charlie Levick and the players to show their coaches just what they are capable of against better opposition at this level of rugby.


Kristian Davies and Sam Smaridge scored second half tries for the Cornwall B team and it was the determination in defence of captain Jack Mills and his committed team mates that ensured that the Devon team were kept to a 29-10 scoreline.


Cornwall u16s are in action against Somerset on Sunday 18th February following training sessions when they will reset the focus and improve on performances when their individual skills and team work will be further tested.

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Cornwall U16 'A' 34 v Bristol U16 'A' 26

In the bright sunshine but very chilly wind at Callywith College both of the Cornwall teams managed wins. Both games were very fast paced and the quality of skills on show were impressive and it was clear just what can be achieved by this age group due to the commitment and enthusiasm of players, coaches at clubs and schools and parent support.

The ‘A’ team game started well for Cornwall with back row Dixon completing a strong break to score out wide and Morgan added the extras for a 7-0 lead which was to be short lived. Bristol piled on the pressure with 4 tries and 4 conversions of their own showing considerable power up front and very quick strong running backs. Going into half time second row Grubb powered through for a try for Cornwall to bring the score to 12-26.

The chance to reset the team’s performance and plan for the second half proved crucial as Cornwall set about the second half and played with more composure, teamwork and control limiting Bristol to few attacking chances and pinned in their own 22 for long periods of the game. Half back Morgan used the wind and conditions well to set up attacking opportunities and tries were scored by Grubb, scrum half Durrant. A conversion and a penalty by Morgan took Cornwall into the lead for the first time at 27-26.

In the last minutes of the game, Dixon surged over for his second of the game. Morgan added the conversion and took the lead and final score to 34-26 to Cornwall

Peter Biernis and Glynn Barnicoat refereed the two games that were a credit to all concerned. Both Cornwall and Bristol can be pleased that their commitment to youth rugby produced two very well contested skilful games that allowed nearly 80 boys to win their representative ties at u16.

Cornwall u16 are next in action at Trowbridge on Sunday 21st January when they play Dorset and Wilts.

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