FOLLOWING their game at Exeter Chiefs last weekend, Cornish Pirates take to the road once again tomorrow with a first ever visit to Championship new boys Cambridge in Round Three of the Premiership Rugby Cup (3pm), writes Phil Westren.
Having each lost their opening two games, both teams will be keen to seek victory, with the Pirates under no illusions that their hosts will provide nothing less than stern opposition at Grantchester Road.
The Pirates have made a raft of changes. Matt McNab will partner Ioan Evans in the centre, and Dan John is named on the wing. Alex Schwarz will wear the number nine shirt and, in the forwards, there are starting roles for front-rowers Jack Andrew, Rhys Williams and Fin Richardson, second rows Josh King and Josh Williams, and fanker Harry Dugmore.
Named among the replacements are Hugh Bokenham and Tom Georgiou, each of whom will be keen to make their debuts for the club.
Prates’ joint head coach Alan Paver said: “Cambridge is a long old way, but we know how to travel and are used to it.
"They are obviously a bit of an unknown quantity but having done extremely well to gain promotion out of National One, which is notoriously difficult to do, we are expecting a stern old test.
"We have made several changes this week because some of the guys have put a good stint in and there is a whole crew looking for an opportunity.
"It is a fine balance between integration and performance, and we know that too many changes can sometimes disrupt performance.
"However, now is about the time to give chances to guys that come in and they equally need to put their hands up for selection.”
Paver added: “Even though having had two useful games, there is an awareness we have a lot to work on, and a lot to learn, and we ultimately just need to speed up that process.”
Cambridge: Joe Tarrant, Matt Hema, Tom Hoppe, Matty Williams, Eli Caven, Steff James, Kieran Duffin, Harry Morley, Morgan Veness, Billy Walker, Gareth Baxter, Kieran Frost, George Bretag-Norris (capt, Matt Dawson, Jared Cardew. Replacements: Willie Priestley, Jake Elwood, Seb Brownhill, Noah Sloot, Archie Strath, Jed Gelderbloom, Lawrence Rayner, Rian Hamilton.
Cornish Pirates: Kyle Moyle, Will Trewin, Matt McNab, Ioan Evans, Dan John, Iwan Jenkins, Alex Schwarz; Jack Andrew, Rhys Williams, Fin Richardson, Josh King, Josh Williams, Harry Dugmore, Alex Everett, John Stevens (captain). Replacements: Morgan Nelson, Jacob Morris, Matt Johnson, Hugh Bokenham, Will Gibson, Ruaridh Dawson, Tom Pittman, Tom Georgiou.