Cockles win final home game of league campaign
- Credit: Archant
Exmouth won their final home game of the 2018/19 South West premier campaign, beating Camborne 38-27 before another good turn out, with the Imperial Ground numbers boosted by a large number of former players attending a club reunion.
Both teams took a while to settle and it was not until the 17th minute that the score board began to move. It was Cockles’ full-back Sam Whitehead, who crossed the whitewash and then converted his own try to see the home side into a 7-0 lead.
As has been the case in most recent outings, the opposition hit back almost immediately with a converted try of their own to level things up.
The remainder of the first half saw both sides getting little change out of the others determined defensive play, but, with the clock ticking down the visitors worked their way into range of the posts and, when awarded a penalty, duly slotted it to lead 10-7.
With a lengthy injury during the half, there was considerable additional time played and, during the ‘added on time’, Mark Wathes ghosted his way over and another Whitehead conversion saw the Cockles back in front at 14-10. However, that was not to be the end of the first half scoring for, in the final seconds, the home defensive effort failed and a try from Andreus Zacharavas followed by a Brownfield conversion saw the Cornish side troop off at the break with a 17-14 advantage.
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Whatever was said during the interval clearly worked for the Cockles began the second half on the front foot and the impressive Wathes crossed for his second try and the Whitehead conversion nsaw the home side back into the lead at 21-14.
A dozen minutes later a Whitehead penalty dissected the uprights and the lead was increased to one of 10 points at 24-14. Twelve minutes later Alex Ducker reduced the deficit for the Cornish side with an unconverted try and a successful penalty closed the gap between the teams to one of just two points at 24-22.
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It was with the game entering its final quarter that the Cockles secured the bonus point with a fine try scored by replacement Harvey Ridgeway. Whitehead again kicked a super conversion from wide out and the Cockles led 31-22.
The fifth and final home try was a superb solo effort from Dave Bargent and another Whitehead conversion extend the home lead to 38-22.
There remained time for the Cornish side to bag another try, albeit an unconverted one to complete the scoring.
This was a contest played out by a couple of teams who will meet again at this level next season.
For the Cockles, the forwards; Halse, Ridout, Cooper, Pape, Harris, O’Shaughnessy, Richards, Fowler, Richardson and skipper Fahy, outmuscled the large Camborne pack. Ultimately Exmouth got the upper hand with more power and provided a platform for backs, Watkins, Meadows, Headley, and Marks along with they try scorers to ensure they ended the home league campaign with a deserved victory.
On Saturday (April 13) the Cockles bring the curtain down on the league campaign with a visit to Bristol to meet Cleve.