Titans sink Pirates with show of power

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RUGBY UNION: Rotherham Titans recovered impressively from their weak performance against Leeds Carnegie over Easter, beating Cornish Pirates 41-28 at home yesterday.

Titans ran in seven tries at Clifton Lane in the re-arranged Championship game.

Their eighth league win gave them the maximum five points and saw them gain revenge for the 53-21 loss in Cornwall in the first league match during November.

In a powerful all-round effort by the Rotherham pack, No 8 Laurence Pearce, from Hull, made an authoritative impact on his full Championship debut.

Pearce’s bulk enabled him to score two tries, one in each half, to suggest that he has the ability to be a match-winner for the Titans should he decide to stay.

Rotherham led 24-16 at the interval against opponents who did not select their best team following a tough, losing quarter-final in the British and Irish Cup on Sunday against Munster.

Indeed, only one player in the Pirates’ team at Clifton Lane played in that game. Nevertheless, Rotherham created and took scoring opportunities, producing four tries in the first half from winger Curtis Wilson, centre Eamonn Sheridan, Pearce and back row forward Toby Freeman.

Both sides ran the ball, and Pirates added another two tries after the break to lay claim to a bonus point.

One of Rotherham’s three second-half tries was scored by hooker Ted Stagg, one of four Titans understood to have signed for London Scottish along with wingers Mike Doneghan and Peter Homan, and prop Jamie Kilbane.

Rotherham Titans: Styles, Doneghan, Sheridan, Nonu, Wilson, McKinney, Williams, Kilbane, Stagg, Denman, Patrick, Sanderson, Freeman, Ellyatt, Pearce.

Cornish Pirates: Moyle, Kilmartin, Mercer, Hill, Smith, Bedford, Kessell, Storer, Tanner, M Maidment, Barry, Lyons, B Maidment, Cheesman, Tyas.

Referee: Dean Richards.