Paver fury as Pirates let slip big lead for second week
PIRATES and Bedford delighted the fans by sharing 80 points in a 12-try end-of-season extravaganza – but Alan Paver, the Cornish side’s co-coach, was far from happy.
A week after Pirates squandered their Championship play-off hopes by blowing a 13-point lead at Richmond, Paver’s side let a 21-point advantage slip and he stormed: “That’s the angriest I’ve been sitting in a dug-out.
“Watching us again be in full control of a game and not to learn any lessons from the season – and especially from last week – is pretty disappointing.
“If we’d have tried something different I could have come to terms with that but it came down again to our decisions, penalties, yellow cards, inability to complete defensive sets – so frustrating.”
The Pirates went 35-14 ahead when skipper Tom Duncan completed his touchdown hat-trick three minutes into the second half but Bedford stormed back with four excellent second-half tries as both sides took three points.
Their ex-Pirates centre Myles Dorrian, heading home to Australia after 11 years in England, grabbed two of them.
Dorrian finished a brilliant high-speed move, started by Michael Le Bourgeois and Elliot Clement-Hill, and then popped over the drop-goal conversion to complete a dream finale.
He said: “It was quite an emotional time and a good way to finish.”
Bedford struck first with a lineout drive taking hooker Dan George over but Pirates punished their errors to take control.
Clement-Hill’s clearance kick was charged down and the Cornish side levelled when Duncan drove over from close range.
Then a misdirected lineout throw by George put Pirates on the offensive again. Duncan was held up but scrum-half Alex Day squeezed over.
Flanker Jake Parker then slotted a grubber kick for Jack Arnott to score in the corner, George grabbed his second for Bedford and industrious prop Jack Andrew popped the ball up for Duncan’s second before half-time.
After Duncan’s third, Bedford retaliated with tries from replacement Josh Buggea and Dorrian.
Replacement winger Alex O’Meara looked to have settled the issue with his 69th-minute try but Bedford came again with two stunning late scores.
Clement-Hill split the Pirates with a 60-metre diagonal run to put Piers O’Conor over and Dorrian had the final say.