Reds jump in as Pi­rates li­ne­out goes walk­a­bout

The Rugby Paper - - Greene King IPA Championship - ■ By TOM INNES

JERSEY Reds held out in the face of sus­tained late pres­sure to claim a se­cond con­sec­u­tive Cham­pi­onship win.

Visi­tors Cor­nish Pi­rates over­came travel prob­lems and a nine­point half-time deficit to bat­tle back into the game, but could not find a win­ning score at the death.

Reds head coach Har­vey Biljon was pleased with the com­po­sure of his new squad.

“There was ad­ver­sity for both teams with Pi­rates’ flight de­lay and us los­ing cap­tain Scott van Breda in the warmup, and then in­juries to Dave McKern and Mark Best.

“Our speed in the first half showed where we want to be; it was an armwres­tle in the se­cond half, but there was lots to learn and we coped well un­der pres­sure.”

The match be­gan at a high tempo, and af­ter a se­ries of for­ward drives, the Reds spread the ball wide and Tom Pin­cus went over in the cor­ner. Lau­rence May hit back with a penalty, but then Pin­cus struck again with an ir­re­sistible in­ter­ven­tion into the line.

The Pi­rates re­cov­ered well and used a penalty ad­van­tage fol­low­ing a high tackle to score a try through Pete Lav­er­ick af­ter cen­tre part­ner Ni­co­las de Bat­tista made the break­through.

Af­ter Pi­rates prop Jack Andrew saw yel­low for slow­ing down the ball il­le­gally, fol­low­ing a team warn­ing, the home side stretched their lead on the stroke of half-time. Mark Best in­ter­cepted and surged for­ward, his team-mates were quickly up in sup­port and even­tu­ally Roy God­frey bar­relled over.

An early penalty by May af­ter the re­sump­tion helped the visi­tors back into the game and there­after there were chances for both teams.

The Reds had one kick­able penalty to stretch their lead but de­clined this in search of a fourth try, but could not ex­e­cute the rolling maul.

Oth­er­wise it was the Pi­rates who were the dom­i­nant force in at­tack in the clos­ing stages, but the Reds' de­fen­sive wall held firm.

Pi­rates co-coach Gavin Cat­tle was dis­ap­pointed that a mal­func­tion­ing li­ne­out de­nied his side the ‘launch-plays’ they needed.

“Our li­ne­out col­lapsed and that’s some­thing ma­jor to work on, al­though the phys­i­cal­ity, fit­ness and com­mit­ment of the boys was ex­cel­lent,” he said.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.