Taunton came away from the game with two league points but if they had showed the same endeavour that they displayed in the last 10 minutes in the first 70 minutes they could well have come away with the maximum.
It was the Titans that started the brightest and after some pressure in the Redruth 22 they were awarded a penalty which fly half Sam Brown kicked to take an early lead. Ten minutes later and the home sides first real passage of pressure in the Taunton half lead to a penalty that fly half Rich Kevern kicked to tie the scores.
The rest of the first half was quite error strewn and turned into a stop start type game with the Titans guilty of trying to over complicate certain aspects of their game as well as failing on some of the basics when they were close to the Redruth line. The home side were reduced to 14 men for 20 minutes when first hooker Matt Gidlow was shown a yellow card for a late shot on Lewis Webb and as he returned prop Craig Williams left for some back chat. The Titans couldn’t capitalise on their man advantage as they made mistake after mistake and Redruth kept themselves in the game with some great defence and when it was their turn to attack they did just that. Their next chance of some points was taken just before the end of the half when they kicked to the corner and showed the visitors how to score a driving maul try and take advantage of a man advantage. The Titans were giving away far too many penalties and after several in a row the referee showed Milo Reynolds a yellow card. The penalty was kicked to the corner again and as they were moving towards the line the referee judged that the Taunton pack collapsed the maul and awarded a penalty try which gave the hosts a 10 – 3 lead at the half time whistle.
It was Redruth that scored more or less from the start of the second half to extend their lead when winger Dean Bonds broke through some poor Titans defence and raced through to score. This meant that Redruth had scored 12 points while Taunton were a man down but Taunton didn’t score any when they had twice as long. Just over 10 minutes later Redruth scored again, this time through full back Aaron Simmonds with Kevern converting to give them a 22 – 3 lead. Taunton started to get themselves into the game a bit more, by recycling the ball well and the visitors scrum having the upper hand claiming penalties and opting to take the home pack on up front. After sever forward drives the ball was released out wide and winger Oscar Kolowski scored his 3rd try in 2 weeks. The conversion was missed but the Titans now had a spring in their step and went after the tiring Redruth team.
Taunton moved the ball from the kick off and made it deep into the home 22. After several strong scrums from the visiting pack, overcoming the embarrassment of last seasons scrum against Redruth, they were awarded a penalty try. The gap closed to 1 converted try but again the Titans compounded their frustration by throwing an interception which James Tucker gleefully picked out and ran in from just outside the Taunton 22. Simmonds converted to make it a 14 point lead with 5 minutes to go.
The Titans didn’t give up and after getting the ball back flanker Ratu Vakalutukali powered his way through some tackles and showed great pace running in from the Redruth 10 meter line. The conversion was missed but the Titans had the last say when once again their pack showed their dominance in the scrum claiming a 2nd penalty try but it was too late to change the result.
It was a disappointing display by the Titans with far too many individual and team errors that cost them possession, territory and missed scoring opportunities. This was only the 2nd league game so there still might be a little rustiness from the players but that doesn’t excuse the players from being stripped in the tackle or the lack of urgency, pace and determination that was missing for 70 minutes of that game. Next week Taunton take on Clifton and a local derby throws another challenge the Titans way and they need to be better than they were today to get any type of result.