Plymstock Albion Oaks 25 Penryn 20
Penryn’s season didn’t get off to the best start, as they suffered an opening day defeat at the hands of Plymstock Albion Oaks.
Penryn’s season didn’t get off to the best start, as they suffered an opening day defeat at the hands of Plymstock Albion Oaks. It wasn’t all doom and gloom as the Borough did return home with two bonus points, but it will be little consolation from a performance Penryn will be keen to improve on.
It has been an excellent pre-season at the Memorial Ground and despite an influx of first team regulars missing, Penryn travelled with a strong match day squad. The Borough did the double over the Oaks last season, taking a maximum 10 point haul, but they are always a tough proposition on home soil and so it proved.
The pressure was on Penryn from the first seconds, as the home side claimed the kick off and mounted wave after wave of attacks. The early signs for Penryn were good, as they defended well to keep the Oaks at bay. Starved of possession though, Penryn couldn’t get a foothold in the contest and the home side struck first with a try. They added a penalty despite a missed conversion to lead 8-0.
Penryn needed a spark to get themselves into the game and they were given just that, when James Salisbury received the ball to set up a counter attack. The winger weaved between would be defenders to register a fine individual score in the corner and get the Borough on the board. Callum Hinchley’s conversion was wide, but it was game on again at 8-5.
The Oaks kept the Borough at bay as Penryn fell foul of the referee and added a penalty goal to increase their lead. The away side were seeing more of the ball though and after working the phases, added a second try when Chris Hellier cannoned his way over the line. Hinchley’s conversion was again wide but Penryn now trailed by only a point. The visitors would have been happy to go into the break just a point behind following an admittedly below par display, but a late converted Oaks try was a big blow.
The second half saw a much improved Penryn display as they raised the tempo from the off. The Oaks battled desperately to keep Penryn out, but couldn’t cope with the pace of the game the away side were now playing at. John Followell crossed to put Penryn within three and even with a change of kicker in Tomas Townsend, the Borough still couldn’t add the extras. Conversions were soon taken out of the equation, when Penryn crossed for their bonus point try to take the lead. Tony Pellow was credited with the score after Penryn rumbled over, Townsend missed the conversion to leave Penryn ahead at 20-18.
Penryn went over for a fifth, but the referee wasn’t in a position to award the try and the home side went on to benefit. With time ticking down Penryn paid the price for perhaps playing a bit too much rugby and a loose ball was snaffled by the hosts who ran half the length of the pitch for a converted try. The Borough couldn’t find the score they needed to rescue the points and instead the home side were the ones celebrating wildly at full time.
Penryn must now bounce back next weekend against newly promoted South Malton, in their first home game of the season.
Penryn: Townsend, Salisbury, Wilmott, Seviour, Chambers, Hinchley, Duval, Patterson, Pellow, Gratrix, Hancock, Followell, Hellier, Jones, Randlesome Replacements: Oldfield, Stanfield, Hutton
Tries: Salisbury, Hellier, Followell, Pellow