DESPITE a strong defensive display, visitors Kingsbridge eventually overwhelmed The Eagles 1XV with long periods of territory and possession at the Recreation Ground, writes Jon Baglow. 

It was damp but firm on Saturday and Falmouth were eager to gain their third home win of the season.

Lacking their usual height in the line out didn’t initially bother the hosts who made the most out of some poor Kingsbridge discipline to move up the pitch and take three from the tee. 

When Kingsbridge had the chance to move up the pitch in the same way a few minutes later, they missed touch and it landed in the hands of a lightning Fin Deavin. Finn, the vice-captain, dodged tackle after tackle and ran most of the pitch before going down over the opponent's line in the right corner. The referee deemed that it was held up rather than dabbed down.

The momentum was really with the Eagles and more poor discipline from the visitors gave Penhallurick another chance from in front of the posts. Unfortunately, he couldn’t double his balance.

There was redemption for both players when after a period of strong pressure deep in the Kingsbridge half Deavin ‘showed and goed’ and busted through the line, this time in the left corner. Penhallurick added the two points from a considerably harder position.

It was at this point, 25 minutes into the first half that things got more difficult. The visitors started to pin Fal in their half, buoyed by set pieces that were beginning to misfire.

From the sideline, we were beginning to think that Kingsbridge were bound to take points here, but Falmouth remained cool, putting in big hits and not allowing Kingsbridge to advance at any rate. Nick Carne put in some great hits and won a couple of turnovers in this period, Rowan Lawrence and Phil Hinchley also made their trademark dominant tackles.

Falmouth Packet: The club believes sustained success is imminent. The club believes sustained success is imminent. (Image: Falmouth Rugby Club)

They eventually did bust through, however, using wing forward Jack Winzer, who'd been looking a handful for most of the first half. He crossed in the left corner under the scoreboard, which would go on to say 10-5 after the conversion was missed by Ben Newman.

Some choice words of encouragement at halftime geed up the hosts and they began getting more success at set piece, scrappily winning some rear line outs and even winning a scrum penalty. Penhallurick utilised this pressure well, managing to break free down the right wing to put Hubble in under the posts.

Momentum swung back to Kingsbridge and they again kept a strong hold of the game in the Falmouth half. They gained a penalty try on the line after some cynical play from Tom Townsend, who would go on to with the Plonker Du Jour. The score was now 17-12.

The sideline were hoping that their team could edge out a narrow win to reward their flare in the first half, but there were still 15 minutes on the clock. 

A heart-breaking bust through the middle by Stuart Harris ended the hopes of a win for the Eagles, who had otherwise put in a solid defensive performance. Newman knocked over an easy two points to turn the draw into a win for the Devon team, the final score 19-17.

Falmouth will be encouraged by a losing bonus point but gutted to have missed out on another home win. This really is a team transformed from the last two seasons though, and sustained success is imminent. 

The Eagles 1XV travel to Paignton next week for a 3pm kick off. The Eagles 2XV are Home to Hayle, with 'The Clubhouse' open to non-members showing the Rugby World Cup Semi-final, England v South Africa, kicking off at 8pm.