DESIRE to wear the famous Black and Gold jersey is as strong as it was 25 years ago according to Cornwall coach Graham Dawe.

The former England international will see his squad go into tomorrow’s crucial County Championship clash knowing a victory against Hertfordshire at Redruth will see them reach their third final at Twickenham in a row.

Just one change has been made to Cornwall’s starting XV for the match with Jon Dawe replacing the injured Max Venables on the right wing.

Looking ahead to the game, Dawe said it has been a “pleasure” to coach the current crop of rugby stars from the Duchy.

Dawe said: “It is great that we won our first two games in Gloucestershire and Kent and what is clear is that the desire to wear the shirt is just as strong as it was when I wore it 25 years ago.

“It is a pleasure to see them just want to go out there and play rugby for their county, but there will be no sentiment out on the pitch on Saturday and only the best team at the end of the day will win.”

A perceived threat Hertfordshire pose is their try scoring prowess, having dotted down ten times in the championship this season compared to Cornwall’s four.

On the flip side, the Duchy’s defence has a firmer record in the campaign conceding 24 points while their rivals have let through 44.

Dawe said he was not too worried about the amount of tries scored by Hertfordshire so far, adding he felt Cornwall’s tense 22-16 win at Kent last weekend has taught the side valuable lessons.

“It was a hard battle and has certainly primed us for this weekend,” he said.

“What we did learn was that we have to nail our chances when they arrive.

“Saturday is a new ball game and Hertfordshire are a good side, but you don’t always win games on how many tries you score.

“You win games based on pressure, your defence and tenacity and all three of these things run deep in our team.”

Excitement is building in the camp, a point admitted by backs coach Ian Morgan ahead of the county’s training session at The Rec on Wednesday evening.

But even with the eagerness within the side to make their Twickenham return, he went onto say it has not been hard to keep them all focused on tomorrow’s battle.

Morgan said: “It has not been that difficult to keep the attention on Saturday.

“The boys are quite good and there is a lot of maturity and experience in the ranks which has helped.

“Obviously the youngsters are keen, but if we keep that under control, then we’ll be ok.”

On Thursday, it was confirmed Redruth second row forward Damien Cook had passed a fitness test and would take a place on the replacements bench for the match.

CORNWALL: 15 Billy Searle (Cornish AB), 14 Jon Dawe (Cornish AB), 13 Jake Murphy (Cornish AB), 12 Neilson Webber (Redruth), 11 Robin Wedlake (Redruth), 10 Lewis Webb (Taunton), 9 Matt Shepherd (Cornish AB); 1 Rupert Freestone (Clifton), 2 Jamie Salter (Cornish AB), 3 Craig Williams (Redruth), 4 Tony Whittle (Camborne), 5 Ben Hilton (Cornish AB), 6 Chris Fuca (Redruth), 7 George Jones (Penryn), 8 Kyle Marriott (c, Redruth).

REPS: Christian Judge (Cornish AB), Tommy Phillips (Redruth), Damien Cook (Redruth), James Goldsworthy (Camborne), BJ Chapman (Cornish AB), Sam Parsons (Redruth), David Mankee (Camborne).