Cornish Pirates lose to Ealing Trailfinders in energetic and emotional game.

League leaders, Ealing Trailfinders, were claimed to be the team to beat in pre-match comments.

Having got within two points of their visitors early in the second half, the Cornish Pirates appeared to be in with a shout.

However, having lost two men to the sin bin early on proved costly.

Ahead of the encounter, the Pirates welcomed fly-half Luke Scully back from injury.

Lock Danny Cutmore and recently match-fit wing Robin Wedlake led the side out of the tunnel, with both set to make their 50th appearance for the team.

Falmouth Packet: Cornish Pirates' skipper Tom Duncan, high-stepped and determined when making a 'carry'. Picture: Brian TempestCornish Pirates' skipper Tom Duncan, high-stepped and determined when making a 'carry'. Picture: Brian Tempest

Both sides observed a two minute silence following the passing of Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, on Friday.

As a mark of respect, the teams and match officials also wore black armbands and the club flags were flown at half-mast.

The Trailfinders opened the scoring in the third minute, when prop Elliot Millar-Mills, also making his 50th appearance for his club, drove over for a try at the old Western National corner.

Fly-half Craig Willis added the extras.

Falmouth Packet: Danny Cutmore - Cornish Pirates' man of the match. Picture: Brian TempestDanny Cutmore - Cornish Pirates' man of the match. Picture: Brian Tempest

There was a setback when, after a delay in play, Luke Scully departed proceedings with a leg injury, though his replacement Will Cargill soon after slotted a well-struck penalty.

3-7 looked to be the score at half-time score, however, after further pressure mounted by the Trailfinders, another try scored on the left, this time by wing James Cordy-Redden, made it 3-12 at the break.

Pumped up to start the second period, the Pirates began well.

Falmouth Packet: Danny Cutmore rises high in the line-out. Picture: Brian TempestDanny Cutmore rises high in the line-out. Picture: Brian Tempest

Shae Tucker the centre scored a converted try to the left of the Newlyn posts.

Trailfinders Defender Willis received an injury and had to be replaced.

After experiencing a relentless period of pressure, and an inevitable number of penalty awards, Cornish Pirates’ skipper Tom Duncan was sent to the sin bin, followed just three minutes later by Tucker.

Wing Angus Kernohan scored a try at the clubhouse corner followed by one at the Penzance posts by flanker Kieran Murphy.

Full-back David Johnston converted both.

Falmouth Packet: Full-back Tommy Wyatt looks to attack but is about to be tackled by Ealing's Max Bodilly who is a product of the Pirates youth section. Picture: Brian TempestFull-back Tommy Wyatt looks to attack but is about to be tackled by Ealing's Max Bodilly who is a product of the Pirates youth section. Picture: Brian Tempest

Among the Pirates replacements was backrower Matt Bolwell, now making his 100th appearance for the club.

Two more tries were eventually scored by the visitors.

The first was a converted effort by replacement scrum-half Jordan Burns, who has punished the Pirates with his try-scoring ability in the past, and the last by another impressive replacement in hooker Shaun Malton.

The final result was 10-38.

Falmouth Packet: Replacement scrum-half Rhodri Davies looks to take on Ealing defenders. Picture: Brian TempestReplacement scrum-half Rhodri Davies looks to take on Ealing defenders. Picture: Brian Tempest

Speaking after the game, Cornish Pirates’ captain Tom Duncan said: "Our discipline unfortunately let us down today and we gave away far too many penalties.

"We knew this game was going to be such a big one for our season so there was a lot of energy and emotions especially in the first 20 minutes, although it did settle down.

"Some fifty fifties didn’t go our way but we have to take that result on the chin, return to the drawing board and learn from it to come back much stronger.

"We are a tight, proud and hardworking group who care about each other, so to lose by such a margin does and should hurt.

"It is disappointing and upsetting and will hurt tonight and tomorrow but come Monday we must put it behind us and prep for Nottingham away next weekend.

"Our aim must be to achieve five points league points from each of our remaining games and then see where we are at the end of the season."