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New look Pirates show promise
9:00am Saturday 17th August 2013 in Sport
Ahead of the new season the Cornish Pirates travelled to Launceston last Saturday to play a triangular set of fixtures against the Cornish All Blacks and St. Austell.
Cornish All Blacks 0 Cornish Pirates 26 This first game of 40 minutes duration was well contested, but the Pirates had to make an early change when injured prop Shane Cahill was replaced by guest player Kieran Davies.
A number of players were quick to impress, including Canada's captain, Aaron Carpenter, who started at hooker in this match and immediately displayed his ball carrying skills.
It was, however, the Cornish Pirates most recent signing, back-rower John Stevens, who stretched to score their first try.
The Pirates went 12-0 up when a try from Alex Dancer was converted by full-back Craig Holland, and it was centre Dancer who next set up a converted score for wing Luke Jones.
To end this opener Jones then notched his second converted try, after prop Ben Prescott's thumper of a tackle had enabled the Pirates to take sudden advantage of acquired possession.
Cornish Pirates: C. Holland, J. Tincknell, A. Dancer,. J. Fatialofa, L. Jones, M. Evans, G. Cattle, J. Parker, A. Cheesman, J. Stevens, G. Johnson, W. Graulich, B. Prescott, A. Carpenter, S. Cahill (K. Davies).
Tries: Jones (2), Stevens, Dancer; cons: Holland (3).
St. Austell 0 Cornish Pirates 54 St. Austell pushed the Cornish All Blacks close before going down 10-5 in the second match, but the Pirates proved too strong for the Saints when they met in the final game of the afternoon.
As in their opener a gifted young Cornishman, this time full-back Max Bodilly, would open the scoring, with fly-half Kieran Hallett slotting the first of his six from six conversion attempts.
Wing James Tincknell, who has been training with the Pirates and has previously played for Leeds Carnegie and Doncaster Knights, notched the second score, as further tries followed for scrum-half Tom Kessell, replacement wing Tom Hendrikson, Bodilly and powerhouse centre Rheon James (with Tom Riley influential in both), and then Tincknell and Kessell again.
Redruth's Richard Brown guested as a replacement hooker in this match.
Cornish Pirates: M. Bodilly (A. Sinclair), J. Tincknell, T. Riley, R. James, M. Evans (T. Hendrikson), K. Hallett, T. Kessell, A,. Carpenter (K. Marriott), J. Atkinson, M. Bolwell, D. Barry, W. Graulich (C. Morgan), M. Maidment, R. Elloway (R. Brown), K. Davies.
Tries: Bodilly (2), Tincknell (2), Kessell (2), Hendrikson, James; cons; Hallett (6), Kessell.
Commenting at the end of a worthwhile afternoon at Launceston, Cornish Pirates Head Coach Ian Davies said: “The scorelines were irrelevant as we had set ourselves three targets for the day, and Harvey and I were both in agreement we pretty much hit those targets.
“The Pirates supporters who attended saw the new boys show up well with Will Graulich and Joe Atkinson playing well from the forwards and Rheon James, Craig Holland and Alex Dancer enjoying impressive debuts.”
Ian added: “There's plenty to work on and we'll try a few different combinations against Worthing and look at a few other aspects of our game.
“Speaking to both the Launceston and St Austell coaches after the game it had been a worthwhile exercise for them too.”
Other friendly fixtures to note are as follows: n Sat 17th Aug: Worthing v Cornish Pirates - ko 3pm n Thurs 22nd Aug: Saracens v Cornish Pirates - ko 6.15pm n Fri 30th Aug: Cornish Pirates v A Cornish Clubs XV - ko 7.30pm at the Mennaye Field n Sat 31st Aug: Cornish Pirates/Cinderford/St. Austell (Triangular) - ko 5pm at the Mennaye Field n Sat 7th Sept: Bath University v Cornish Pirates - ko 3pm (venue TBC)