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Never a dull moment at the Cornish Pirates. More entertainment than the locals can shake a stick at – even if ambition for greater things seems to be stifled by performance. If not from elsewhere.
Greater things though, seem a little way off at the moment for the Cornish side. Ergo, some irritating habits that keep rearing up – habits that have contributed in no small manner, to the Pirates stuttering start to their campaign.
That said – their 5th loss in six, bizarrely saw them leapfrog Jersey up to the dizzy heights of 9th in the league. Something that was decidedly the last thought on people’s minds, with only five minutes remaining and Nottingham striving to add further misery to their hosts. But we will examine such a resounding finish shortly.
In the meantime – hopes for some kind of break from recent woes were immediately blown out of the water – as skipper for the day, Toby May, instinctively stuck out a hand at the wrong moment. Nottingham’s wingman, Scanlon duly punished this indiscretion twice, courtesy of some deft footwork from Eden and then Veenendaal respectively. Ideal start – not.
Back to their full compliment, the Pirates finally had some ability to respond – this time with Koster’s nifty dab behind the Greens…Blues advancing defence. Moyle touched down whilst May (L) continued with his impeccable tee kicking of late, that has seen him move up to 3rd in the leading scorers table – overall league-wise.
Resistance continued, but it did look fragile at times. Either way, May & Millett traded penalties and the home ship seemed a little steadier. Until that was Koster saw yellow somewhat harshly, after a clash of heads with Scanlon. Back to square one for the Pirates, who instantly fell behind further, as Williams sprinted over in the Clubhouse Corner.
The second period wasn’t to get any better, despite Koster’s return and a 2nd dot down for Moyle with half an hour remaining. A score that saw the winger become the Championship’s joint leading try scorer so far this season.
Veenendaal slight of foot allowed the scrum half to dart under the Newlyn End posts. And then Williams claimed his second minutes later, after cleanly collecting Hakalo’s cross field kick with aplomb.
Pirates anguish however seemed complete. From the stands – Cornish chins in-characteristically seemed to be planted on chests. The visitors would surely grab a sixth score to twist the knife in deeper…..
Actually no. A grandstand finish somehow ignited from the embers and produced two tries in those final five minutes to grab two more bonus points – the highest accumulation in both the Championship & Premiership so far. Not that that will be much consolation in some respects.
Nonetheless seeing Day burst through after some good work from Channon up to Nottingham’s 10m line lifted the mood. Then Koster promptly followed that up with what must be a candidate for the try of the season, to finally give something to smile and cheer about.
Quite – Two weeks of cup action hopefully, will allow the Pirates some time to regroup for the next block of league games. Rather like it did two seasons ago as they prepared to meet London Welsh a few days after going bottom of the pile.