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Ashley Morcom full of praise for depleted Redruth despite defeat

By Western Morning News  |  Posted: January 05, 2014

Redruth head coach Ashley Morcom

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REDRUTH head coach Ashley Morcom was candid about the club’s position after the departures of Darren Jacques and Lewis Vinnicombe and a 22-0 defeat away to Southend in National Two South.

Despite the financial problems at the club and the atrocious weather on Saturday, the players still gave their all.

“Fair play to the guys that played today,” said Morcom. “In my eyes they have put the foundation in for the rest of the season. There were five there who have not yet trained with us. What is important now is that we pick ourselves up, dust ourselves down and get on with the rest of the season.

“Full credit to Southend – they played the conditions better and got a couple of tries in each half.”

With skipper Chris Fuca injured, Owen Hambly led a young Redruth side in which Adam Strick, who has been playing for Hayle, and Cornish Pirate Mat Bolwell made their debuts. Greg Goodfellow is expected to be in next week’s squad along with Damien Cook, Craig Williams and Rhodri McAtee.

Southend were comfortable winners but the Reds did not want for effort and, had they been able to turn three clear-cut openings into tries, the outcome in Essex could have been different.

On balance, the bits of luck that can be the difference between winning and losing perhaps all fell to the hosts on the day but the result was not in doubt after Harry Hudson’s try for Southend early in the second half.

Winning the toss was crucial as Southend took first use of a strong wind. They got their noses in front after seven minutes with a well-worked try finished off in the right hand corner by Tom Gannon.

The hosts had the better of play and their half-backs Lee Sandberg and Brad Burr controlled the game, but Redruth played some good rugby.

The visitors did not cash in on line breaks by Murray Westren and Hambly, but heading towards half time the Reds were just a score behind. However, Luke Collins picked up a yellow card on the half-hour after an innocuous-looking offside in midfield.

A mistake after an astute kick from Burr gifted Southend a try for Sam Nash near the posts, Burr converting.

In a second half played in torrential rain, Redruth conceded field position and Southend again showed good forward play to go through the phases, with the Reds defending their line with good determination before Hudson powered over for a third try.

Despite replacement full-back Max Bodilly playing well, with the middle third of the pitch becoming a gluepot it was hard to see where Redruth were going to create a try, and more controlled play from Southend ended when Mark Billings went over wide out on the right for the bonus-point try after 65 minutes to put the result beyond doubt.

Despite the awful conditions, replacement flanker Matt O’Leary cut through the Southend defensive line in midfield but lacked support as Redruth ended scoreless.

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