GALLERY: Devon make impressive start to U20 County Championship campaign

26 Jan 2020 21:43 | Devon RFU

DEVON made a tremendous start to their Jason Leonard Under-20 County Championship campaign on Sunday by securing a 30-18 win over big rivals Cornwall at Ivybridge RFC.

After a tight first half, Devon ran in four tries in the second period to claim a full five points and top Division One, Pool Four after the opening round of fixtures.

There were few try scoring chances for either side in the first 40 minutes.

Devon took the lead in the 25th minute with a penalty from Exmouth fly-half Harry Ottaway.

However, Cornwall pulled level within five minutes with a long-range penalty from Redruth’s Aaron Simmonds.

Ottaway edged the hosts in front again on 35 minutes with another successful kick, but Simmonds responded two minutes later.

Devon had a great chance just before the break following a good run by full-back Dan Lilley but Cornwall defended well.

Cornwall had flanker Tom Spiers yellow carded 11 minutes into the second period and Devon scored within two minutes when lock Ethan Justice forced his way over from close range. Ottaway added the conversion to put his side 13-6 ahead.

At the next restart, Cornwall were reduced to 13 players when number six Cameron Taylor was yellow carded for a foul tackle.

Devon then scored two tries in six minutes from driving mauls to take control of the game. First, Okehampton hooker Reece Bartlett went over from a 22-metre drive before Sam Fulthorpe picked and scored after influential captain Adam Northcott had been stopped just an inch short. Ottaway converted the later to put Devon 25-6 in front.

With 10 minutes to go, Cornwall mounted a fight-back with tries by Eliot Salt and Mawgan Osborne to move to within a score.

But Devon sealed the win with the best try of the day when Crediton’s Ethan Pearce scored in the left corner after a good home break.

Devon will continue their campaign on Sunday, February 23 when they travel to Cheltenham Tigers to play Gloucestershire, who beat Berkshire 30-24 away this weekend.

Devon:  Dan Lilley (Ivybridge), Ollie Gibbon (Topsham), Kieran McManus (Barnstaple), Josh Woodland (Crediton), Devon Jewsbury (Brixham), Harry Ottaway (Exmouth), Dylan Gosling (Barnstaple), Callum Wood (Exmouth), Reece Bartlett (Okehampton), Jed Reid (Sidmouth), Toby Turner (Devonport Services), Ethan Pearce (Crediton), Charlie Meers (Exmouth), Ethan Justice (Exmouth), Adam Northcott (capt, Ivybridge). Replacements: Sam Fulthorpe (Exmouth), Tom Cooke (Exmouth), Connor Vickery (Taunton), Nathan Tomkins (Okehampton), Callum Davies (Bideford), Matt Seager (Exmouth), Jack Routley (South Molton).