CORNISH PIRATES director of rugby Ian Davies believes his players have answered their critics with their 19-15 victory over Jersey.
Pirates have struggled for form since the turn of the year, with their only win of 2014, before Sunday's success, coming in the British and Irish Cup against Ayr.
However, Davies has been unhappy about the level of criticism his young squad have faced this season as they begin the first steps of a three-year plan to gain promotion to the Premiership.
He said: “Some of our supporters have jumped on the bandwagon of criticising us and we’ve had the performance against Moseley described as disastrous. Where these people live? I have no idea. It isn’t on planet earth, I can tell you that.
“The guys are putting a lot of effort in week in and week out. We said it was going to be a roller-coaster this season, and the players rolled their sleeves up today and got the victory they deserved.”
Pirates scored three tries against Jersey through Junior Fatialofa, Kyle Moyle and Max Bodilly. It was a fine achievement in difficult conditions at Mennaye Field.
Davies said: “At one stage, I was a little bit worried because I’d promised the boys I’d do a Jürgen Klinsmann dive through the water if they won with a four-try bonus point.
“The boys have done a lot of analysis on the way Jersey defend, with their ten going on the blindside. You could see that in Kyle’s try, with the set play off a scrum, which he finished really well.
“I think we kicked the ball away a little bit too much in the first half but we thoroughly deserved to get the four-try bonus point.
“It was disappointing to lose a try to them right at the end to give them a losing bonus point because I don’t think they deserved anything. I thought we played really, really well but there was only one team playing rugby and that was us.”
Full-back Bodilly impressed on his Championship debut but Davies also praised the rest of his squad. He said: “Max Bodilly on his debut was an absolute superstar. He scored a great try, could have had another one and fielded the ball really well.
“We knew they were going to kick to him. He is certainly a star in the making but the other guys all stood up. Everybody wanted to be part of the action and the boys, to a man, all performed really well.”