Redruth 23, Tonbridge Juddians 37

Promotion chasing Tonbridge pulled away in the final quarter to earn a deserved win in their quest to reach the play-offs, writes Bill Hooper.

Star of the show for the visitors was a Cornishman, Duncan Tout, formerly at Bude who scored a hat-trick of tries at the home of Cornish rugby.

The defeat will be a bitter disappointment to Redruth, despite being down to the bare bones in the backs for this game, so much so that they were obliged to field a bench containing only forwards.

With a stiff breeze blowing and some lukewarm sunshine both sides set off at a relentless pace. It was Redruth who struck first when centre Jack Simmons rounded off a fine move after just four minutes.

Tonbridge soon replied when No.8 Truman Sullivan scored to level matters following sustained forward pressure.

No.8 Brad Howe put in some strong runs for the Reds, whilst Jack Oulton and Richie Kevern at half-back kicked for position.

Kevern kicked a penalty for Redruth to re-gain the lead, before Tout bagged the first of his tries converted by fly-half Will Robinson.

Kevern reduced the deficit before half-time with a second penalty, as Tonbridge were reduced to fourteen men following a yellow card.

Early in the second half Simmons intercepted to run in some 35 meters for his second try of the game with Kevern adding the extras.

Robinson cut the arrears with a penalty and then added the conversion to Tout’s second try of the game.

Redruth bounced back scoring a third try, this time from a catch-and-drive with skipper Richard Brown getting the score.

As injuries to the backs forced Redruth to improvise, Tonbridge took command. Tout scuttled over for his third try of the afternoon before No.8 Will Colderick added a fifth try. Robinson kicked a conversion and further penalty to complete the scoring.

There was further bad news for Redruth when on Friday evening centre Nielson Webber confirmed that the seriousness of the injury he picked up at Rams the previous week has forced him to retire from playing.

Apart from Redruth, Webber played for Barnstaple, Launceston and Old Patesians as well as playing representative rugby for Cornwall and England Counties.

Redruth: Whitworth, Notman, Simmons, Nonu, Bonds, Kevern, Oulton, Kivalu, Brown, Tompsett, Prisk, Hattam, Eddy, Stevens, Howe. Reps: Salt, Barnes, Gidlow, Butterworth, Joyce.