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Hertfordshire 15 v Cornwall 23

Saturday 14th May 2016

Once again the Cornish boys were made to dig deep by a determined Hertfordshire side who were keen to upset the odds in a game which was always going to be a vital step in determining the outcome of Division 1 South of the Bill Beaumont County Championship.

 

Position

Team

P

W

D

L

PF

PA

+/-

TB

LB

Pts

1

Cornwall

2

2

0

0

56

42

+14

1

0

9

2

Gloucestershire

2

1

0

1

65

55

+10

1

1

6

3

Hertfordshire

2

0

0

1

46

51

-5

1

0

5

4

Surrey

2

0

0

2

50

69

-19

0

1

1

 

The table shows that a win over Surrey at Camborne on Saturday 21st May (3.00 p.m.) will see the “Black & Golds” return to Twickenham for their fourth consecutive County Championship Final.

 

Despite getting quickly out of the blocks at Bishop’s Stortford the result was in doubt until the 69th minute when Sam Matavesi crossed for his second try of the afternoon and fourth of the campaign.

Cornwall dominated the opening quarter and scored two tries in the opening 17 minutes, with both coming from their effective catch-and-drive line-out drill after they turned down kickable penalties.

The first arrived in the 11th minute from Plymouth Albion forward Matavesi after Kyle Marriott's initial line-out catch.

The second, six minutes later, was finished off by No.8 Herbie Stupple, after Ben Hilton's mid-air claim of the ball, and full back Matt Shepherd banged over the conversion to give Cornwall a 12-0 lead.

The visitors were then guilty of letting their opponents back into it as they fell-foul of referee Luis Caviglia giving away a string of penalties and making far too many unforced errors. By the end of the game the penalty count was fourteen against Cornwall compared to seven against the hosts.

Hertford hooker Brett McNamee snaffled a loose ball to score in the corner, then fly-half Josh Sharp kicked a penalty to bring his side to within four points of Cornwall.

Hertfordshire sensed the tide was in their favour pounding the Cornish line and twice being held up over the line. Cornwall then conceded a penalty-try as Hertfordshire racked up the pressure from a five metre scrum, converted by Sharp for a 15-12 lead at the break.

Cornwall made a perfect start to the second period with a scrum penalty from 42 metres out by Shepherd to level the scores, but Hertfordshire soon returned to spending a lengthy spell in the visitors' 22 after a sizzling break that resulted in a yellow card for Duchy centre Jake Murphy for not rolling away from the tackle.

They were awarded a succession of penalties, but twice they turned down kicks at goal in favour of first a line-out and then a close-range scrum, but the Duchy defence remained firm.

Then Goodfellow burst clear and booted the ball downfield, and even though Hertfordshire initially rescued the situation, McNamee got isolated and Cornwall were awarded a penalty, which Shepherd slotted to establish an 18-15 advantage.

Cornwall then made the game safe when Matavesi scored his second try of the game, his fourth in two games, to set up a finale at Camborne on Saturday against a Surrey side who have lost both their opening games. The Cornish players, coaches and management will be hoping for a packed Recreation Ground to spur the boys on to a Twickenham return.

Additional Info

  • CRFU Competitions: County Championship
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  • Cornwall Rugby Football Union Ltd
    The Cornwall Rugby Football Union was formed in 1883 and operated until 2009 as an unincorporated body when it registered under the Industrial and Provident Societies Act 1965 becoming Cornwall Rugby Football Union Limited. Clubs affiliated to Cornwall Rugby Football Union Limited are Members with representatives of each club in…