REDRUTH head coach Ashley Morcom was left frustrated as the Reds went down by five tries to three despite a dominant forward performance at Clifton.
“Once again we gave the opposition a head start. We got into some key areas but did not come away with anything. It is very disappointing that we are playing some really good rugby and cannot turn it into points,” he said after his side’s 35-21 National League Two South loss.
“There are a lot of things we can take from the game but equally we have got to have a good look at ourselves and take ownership of what we are doing. It is frustrating that a lot of teams live off our errors. We seem to work really hard for our tries while we gift tries to the opposition.”
Playing into a strong wind Redruth fell 21 points behind before they got onto the scoreboard but pulled back to 21-14 before giving away a soft try on the stroke of half-time.
Clifton skipper Matt Britton dived over for the opening try after 13 minutes after the Reds had conceded possession by giving away two penalties in succession. Charlie Foley added the first of his five conversions.
Darren Jacques showed a remarkable turn of speed for a front row player, but Redruth did not turn a good opportunity into points. They attempted to run out of defence, but were turned over in the 22 leading to tries for Clifton centres Tom Preece and James Golledge, both converted, to see the hosts 21 points clear after 26 minutes.
As the Redruth forwards started to impose themselves on the game, Brett Rule, with the hint of a dummy, was able to ghost through the defence to touch down at the posts after 29 minutes, Murray Westren added the extras.
Clifton were on the ropes with Golledge in the sin bin and Redruth were twice close to pushover tries before referee Josh Chapman awarded a penalty try after a collapsed maul in first half injury time that Westren converted.
With half-time looming and momentum in their favour, Redruth failed to clean up the restart and when the ball went loose, Foley was able to gather and stroll to the posts for the bonus point try.
In a slow start to the second half, Redruth conceded field position. Clifton were patient in building pressure, Redruth skipper Damien Cook was shown the yellow card for an offside offence at a maul and minutes later, Britton dived over for his second try, the conversion leaving the Reds trailing by 21 and looking up the mountain again.
Good play from the Redruth forwards opened up the home defence and Greg Goodfellow was able to pick his spot and stroll through to the line after 53 minutes.
In the remainder of the game Redruth had position and clear cut chances to at least draw level, but credit to a Clifton side that did not lie down. Their enthusiasm saw them comfortably over the finishing line as the Reds returned to Cornwall dispirited and empty handed.