Titans win in style
It was billed as a top of the table clash but after 20 minutes there was only one team in it.
The game started in glorious sunshine with the first 10 minutes played between the two 22m lines as both teams battled for the upper hand. The Titans made their first incursion into the Barnstaple 22 and were rewarded with a penalty which they kicked to the corner. The lineout was stolen by Barnstaple who cleared their lines but the Titans managed to get a 2nd penalty from a scrum on the visitors 10 meter line. A quick tap by lively scrum half Conor Littlewood put the Titans on the attack. Lewis Webb fed on to centre Freddie Fraser who ignored the two wingers outside him who would have had a stroll in but took contact instead. A couple more phases towards the touch line and the ball was then fed back the other way to the far touch line where winger Ollie Rice passed to hooker Chris Francis who dived over into the corner for his first try in a Titans shirt.
Barnstaple closed the gap with a penalty from fly half Jake Murphy before the Titans took control and dominated the rest of the game something that didn’t go unnoticed by Barnstaple’s head coach Steve Perry ‘Today was a pretty sobering experience and will hopefully keep the boys grounded. I hope they will learn from this and move on. I thought Taunton were excellent and ruthless. After last week’s win we were on a big high but this week is a big low but we have to pick ourselves up and look forward to next week. That’s the good thing about league rugby you get a chance to put things right straight away. So we will move on from this, have a good week training and look forward to next week.’
Once the home side started to keep hold of the ball and move through the phases they started to find holes and the first to capitalise was full back Gary Kingdom scoring under the posts after some good use of turnover ball and a great off load by Francis. Straight from the kick off a great two handed take by 2nd row Milo Reynolds, who was making his debut for the Titans, was driven on by the home pack for 25 meters before centre Rob Allen followed suit and made an excellent break and went under the posts to score his 1st try for the Titans. This was followed by a brace for winger Aron Struminski before the half time whistle. His first came from a great delayed pass from fly half Lewis Webb, who had a great game and won the County Stores Man of the Match, which put Struminski under the posts and the second the winger showed his pace to round the defence to score. Kingdom converted 4 of the tries and added a penalty to make the half time score 34 – 3.
During the half time team talks the weather took a turn for the worst and the heavens opened which could have given the visitors a chance to get back into game as the conditions made it hard for both teams. However it was the Titans that kept the ball in hand despite the conditions and Kingdom added two further penalties before number 8 Sam Prior barged his way over from a scrum 5 meters out before fellow back rower Dan Frost also dotted down from the back of a driving maul. With Kingdom converting one of the tries it made the score final score 52 – 3.
The Titans head coach Tony Yapp said after the game ‘We are obviously really pleased with the result as there was a little bit of pressure coming into the game as we were both 2 from 2. Barnstaple are obviously a good side and have started the season well and for any team to beat Redruth you know they are going to be a threat. So for us to score 50 points today is great but the biggest thing for me was to only concede 3 and the fact that we controlled the game for large parts which is down to the players and their attitude going into the game and during it.’