Devon U18s are positive, despite warm-up defeat to Cornwall
DEVON Under-18s head coach Glenn Channing is excited about his side’s potential, despite their 34-8 defeat to Cornwall in a warm-up match at a rain-soaked Ivybridge on Sunday.
Devon had plenty of possession and territory but failed to make it tell, unlike Cornwall who took their chances well.
“We had enough opportunities in the right areas of the park, but it was just that final pass,” said Channing. “Maybe that was due to the weather or that we have only had one training session together.
“It’s just about getting that understanding, game management and being clinical in the right areas, but we haven’t really had time to work on these things and that is an easy fix. It is not a big hurdle to overcome.
“Looking at the bigger picture, I think we are in a good place. It is the first time we have had a proper run out together. We still have new players coming in, but we now have four good training sessions leading up to our first championship game in December.
“As a group, as a programme, we are really pleased and excited about what is ahead.”
The game was only four minutes old when Cornwall took a 7-0 lead with a fine converted try from their scrum-half.
But Devon hit back almost immediately when scrum-half George Down scored a good try in the right corner.
Cornwall collected a drive try to go 14-5 in front on 18 minutes before Sam White kicked a penalty to reduce the gap to six points.
The visitors picked up two yellow cards in the first half but Devon could not make them tell and the visitors kicked a penalty before number eight Cameron Duncan was ruled to have been held up on the line for the hosts.
Devon’s back three, especially winger Matt Burns, always looked dangerous when they got the ball but they just did not get it enough in the right areas.
The Green and Whites came out for the second half fired up and pressed the Cornwall line. However, they frustratingly knocked the ball on over the line two minutes after the break before then failing to make a penalty close to the line tell.
Against the run of play, Cornwall scored a third try to go 24-8 up before Devon picked up a yellow card that led to a fourth try for the Duchy.
Devon kept their heads up and came within inches of scoring but were penalised for holding on right on the try line.
With the last play of the game, Cornwall got a penalty and they went for goal to make the scoreline 34-8, which did not reflect just how competitive the game was.
Devon Under-18s: 15 Rhys Mullin, 14 Bertie Hughes, 13 Will Cane, 12 Sam White, 11 Matt Burns, 10 Tom Newman, 9 George Down, 1 Jacob Gould, 2 Ben Jago, 3 Toby Teague, 4 Jack Bull, 5 Toby Turner, 6 Pete Keanie, 7 Freddie Hearing, 8 Cameron Duncan. Replacements: Seb Tooke, Herbie Owen, Brandon Moore, Lewis Sharan, Alex Bates, Zac West, Ewan Kent, Josh Woodland, Ben Sapiecha.