Cornish Pirates’ Dominant Second Half Secures Bonus Point Win Over Ampthill
Ampthill welcomed visitors Cornish Pirates for their first ever visit to Dillingham Park’s Grange Jaguar Bowl on a dry, bright & windy afternoon with excellent under foot conditions.
Playing against the wind Amps began well gaining territory through a combination of phase play through the forwards and back play out wide before full back Tomi Lewis produced an elusive run, stepping & gliding through multiple tackles to touch down near the posts on 10 minutes, fly half Louis Grimoldby adding the extras.
Just 3 minutes later A’s were denied a second try after the visitors had been penalised 10m outside their 22, Grimoldby’s quick kick to nothing to the corner being gathered & apparently touched down by left wing Sam Baker. Referee Simon Harding overruled his assistant who’d awarded the score despite being some distance away and on the wrong side to observe the grounding.
Having taken play back for the penalty, Grimoldby made no mistake to extend the lead to 10-0.
As the match moved into the second quarter Cornish Pirates began to exert some control through their forwards while Cargill’s boot took advantage of the wind to force the hosts time & again deep into their own territory.
The pressure told with the home side twice penalised in front of the posts allowing Cargill to convert penalty goals in the 17th & 27th minutes.
Ampthill restored the lead to 7 pts with a 33rd minute Grimoldby penalty, scant reward for some fine attacking play.
A missed tackle in the 36th minute then gave the visitors the chance to apply pressure inside Amps 22 where centre Rory Parata squeezed over from close range, Cargill missing what was a relatively simple conversion to leave the score 13-11 at oranges.
Despite conceding a score near half time A’s connections would have been satisfied to lead at the interval having played uphill and against the wind.
Unfortunately Cornish Pirates produced a dominant second half display with their forwards winning the collisions and their backs using both their size and their offloading skills to carve open the hosts defence.
Pirates outscored the home side 19-0 with tries from right wing Robin Wedlake-Millecam (41 minutes) and a brace from hooker Daniel Frost (54, 70) while Cargill added 2 conversions.
The home side were denied another try after a charge down and foot race saw the referee again overrule his assistant but in truth Ampthill were outplayed in the half.
Ampthill Head Coach Paul Turner commented “The 13-11 lead at half time didn’t do us justice, then as has happened once or twice before this season, we’ve kicked off, given the ball away and conceded a soft try & the game momentum. The boys have done us proud so far this season but we were not able to play to our game plan in the second half.”
Cornish Pirates Director of Rugby Chris Stirling commented “We enjoyed our visit to Ampthill with excellent hospitality and a fine pitch in a unique natural amphitheatre location. Clearly the result went our way but in truth, with 3rd playing 4th, this was probably our best 5pts of the season so far.”
Half time:- Ampthill 13 Cornish Pirates 11
Referee:- Simon Harding
Ampthill Man of the Match:- Syd Blackmore
Tries: Lewis (10)
Cons: Grimoldby (11)
Pens: Grimoldby (14, 33)
Tries: Parata (36), Wedlake-Millecam (41), Frost (54, 70),
Cons: Cargill (42, 71)
Pens: Cargill (17, 27)
Lineouts Won 6 7
Lineouts Lost 2 1
Scrums Won 3 5
Scrums Lost 2 0
Penalties Conceded 12 8
Yellow Cards 0 0
Lewis 7, Sutherland 6, Bird-Tulloch 7, Sage 6 (Mathews 58, 6), Baker 6 (Anderson 51, 6), Grimoldby 7, Barrett 7 (FukoFuka 58, 6), Tonga’uiha 7 (Christie 65, 6), Van Vuuren 7 (Ward 49, 6), Collins 7 (Christie 39) (Collins 40) (Woodward 66, 6), Johnson 7 (Blackmore 62, 8), Kerry 6, Arthur 6 (Molitika 49, 6), Bercis 7, Blackmore 8 (Williams 56, 6)
Moyle 7, Wedlake-Millecam 7 (Davey 78), Parata 7 (Patterson 67, 6), Tucker 7, Cant 6, Cargill 7 (Rojas Alvarez 70), Dawson 7, Walker 7 (Andrew 54, 7), Frost 8 (Channon 70), Tyack 7 (Rodman 54, 6), Lemalu 7 (Cutmore 62, 6), Beukeboom 7, Caulfield 7 (Stevens 70), Kiri Kiri 7, Mcrae 7