Roseland 36 – Stithians 0

Another great write up from our own Vice Captain – Tom Day:

Roseland start league campaign with win

Saturday 10th October saw the first home league game of the 2015/16 season and following recent successes there was an air of expectation at Philleigh.

The pitch was looking immaculate, special thanks to Ben Taylor for cutting and to Shaun Eamer for marking out.
Roseland boasted a strong squad with a compliment of 5 substitutes, a few returning players, and still missing several regular players who were unavailable for various reasons.

Due to a shortage of referees Roseland’s very own Davo Williams stepped in to fill the void and both teams agreed to play the match as a league game and credit to Stithians, buoyed by a recent good performance versus Veor, and to Davo for accepting these conditions.

Stithians kicked off the game playing down hill but against the wind, unfortunately they still managed to put the ball out on the full so a Roseland scrum ensued on the halfway. The first scrum of a game is always an interesting affair as to which pack can gain the early psychology dominance and Stithians won that little battle putting the Roseland pack under early pressure. If this was to continue it was going to be a long day for Roseland.

For the first 20 minutes the game was pretty even with both sides finding there feet, as was the ref, and trying to unlock each other’s defence. Sadly during the opening exchanges Stithians lost their No8 to a nasty shoulder injury.
Shaun Eamer kept the Stithians defence honest by using the wind and kicking cleverly to the corner.

The deadlock was broken when, inside their own 22, Stithians infringed at the breakdown and gifted Matt Eddie the chance to kick 3 points from in front of the posts.

Geed up by the 3 points Roseland grew in confidence and grew into the game. With Pirates regular Jack Andrew on the sidelines with sound advice for the lads Roseland scored their first try when the ball was worked along the line to Mike “Legs” Rushbridge who, full of confidence from last weeks hat trick, beat several defenders to score a well deserved try. Eddie converted.

With the score now 10-0 the Roseland players worked their way back into the Stithians 22 and off a line out the ball was passed to Eamer who put a clever inside pass into “Legs” who came in off his wing and scored under the posts without a hand laid upon him. Eddie converted again to bring the half time score to 17-0.

The second half was going to be tough, despite playing down the hill, Roseland knew that Stithians would keep them penned back by kicking to the corners, this was to prove the case with Stithians fly half Andrew Creeden kicking well and keeping Roseland honest. Several times Roseland had dangerous line outs 5m from their line and despite serious pressure from Stithians they managed to escape without conceding any points.

With the score stuck on 17-0, it was a moment of pure luck that created the next points. A Stithians scrum about 10m out from there line was appearing routine. The ball was won, however the Stithians scrum half got confused who he was passing too and the player who was “blocking” for the 10 allowed the ball to drop to the floor and Roseland blindside flanker Joe Warren claimed his first try for Roseland by grateful collecting and dotting the ball down. Eddie converted from the 15m line to the right of the posts.

Roseland were now sensing the try bonus point and threw everything at Stithians.

The replacements started to come on to add there fresh legs. Andy Syncock replaced Forrest Gump in the centre and he brought his own style of direct running. Martin replaced Anthony Thomas at hooker to add a bit of extra bulk to the front row. Jonathan Goodenough continued his development at prop by replacing stalwart Dave “gerbil” Martin. Rhys Bull, making his first appearance of the season, replaced Ryan Harris on the flank and finally James Rundle replaced Will May, also making his first appearance at full back this season, and James went on the wing with Sammy Glanville shifting to 15.

Stitihans repelled well and aided by some handling errors kept Roseland at bay. However not to be denied Roseland battered away at the Stithians line and worked the ball from left to right creating half a gap for James Palmer to make a dash for the line, he was snagged just short and some quick recycling allowed prop Jake Flamank to crash over from close range about 5m in from the right touch line. This produced a rare miss from Eddie as his attended conversion caught the wind and drifted wide.

With the clock ticking and Roseland now firmly on top some good running, quick recycling and sensible off loads from the Roseland team they find themselves in the Stithians 22. With quick ball available Roseland caught the Stithians defence napping and a good pass from Eamers found Joe Warren to complete his brace of tries by scoring around the 15m line on the right of the posts. Eddie completed his good afternoon with the boot by again converting to bring the final score to 36-0.

This was an excellent win by Roseland over a Stithians team they have sometimes struggled against in past. Again it would be unfair to single out individual players but what has been on show so far shows a lot of promising performances to come.

With Lankelly Fowey winning convincingly over Redruth Albany and Camelford narrowly losing at home to St Just Cornwall Two looks as though it could be an intriguing tussle.

League rugby takes a break now until November 7th. Roseland are scheduled to entertain Pirates Amateur 2nds at home on 17th October, 2pm kick off.