VIDEO: Cornish Pirates expecting tough test against Worthing
The Cornish Pirates’ pre-season programme continues on Saturday(3pm) with a trip to newly-promoted National League One side Worthing.
The Penzance club beat Cornish All Blacks and St Austell at Polson Bridge last weekend but coach Harvey Biljon expects a tougher test at Roundstone Lane.
He said: “It will be another challenge for us. We will be coming up against a team that the current coaching team and players have never come up against.
“We also have to get used to the travel. As much as we enjoy home friendlies, it can be a shock to the system when we have to travel far from home.
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“We want to get the players used to dealing with the long journey times and how to prepare, especially with a new group of players.
“These are all things they will learn and it will put them in good stead for when the season does come around.”
The Pirates’ players were put through a gruelling fitness testing routine in between their 40-minute matches with Launceston and St Austell last weekend.
Biljon said the demands on his squad will be different once again at Worthing, as they continue their preparations for the start of the Championship season on September 15 against Bristol.
“The players have been tested again during the week, so things up at Worthing won’t be exactly the same," he said.
“The reaction from the players to what we have been doing has been really interesting. They were pretty fatigued after the fitness sessions.
“They said the first five minutes against St Austell in the second game were a bit surreal and they were seeing stars.
“But we want to put them in those sorts of situations to take them out of their comfort zone and push them forward each time.”
Flanker Chris Morgan will lead the side this weekend as the Pirates look to ensure their senior players get the right balance of game time and recovery.
Biljon said: “We have to make sure everyone gets the right opportunities. We have had a couple of injuries with Shane Cahill and Alex Dancer but they all want to put themselves in the shirt for the first game of the season.”